One of my favorite comic series was (is? Do they still print it?) Marvel’s What If? A different writer each month would take an event from Marvel history, change it, and explore the consequences–what if Professor X became the Juggernaut instead of his brother? What if Kraven the Hunter had killed Spider-Man, or Wolverine had killed the Hulk?
History tells us now that if the 8th-seeded Knicks had been eliminated in the 1st round by Miami in 1999, the Knicks were in talks to fire Jeff Van Gundy and replace him with Phil Jackson. As we all know, that didn’t happen, because this glorious, wonderful, I-injured-myself-celebrating-this-moment moment happened:
Some year’s, the summer NBA offseason’s looked forward to even more than the onseason.
1996 was one of those years. Not only ‘cuz I’d just graduated from high school and my girlfriend’s parents worked late every night, leaving us free run of the house (and each other) the whole time. No, the ’96 offseason had been anticipated by Knick fans for a long time, after a disappointing season.
Bear in mind, back in the magical, Dolan-free years of the 90s, the Knicks could have a season where they advanced to the 2nd round, took a game from the 72-win Bulls and almost a second (stupid Rodman and his stupid assists to stupid Bill Wennington) and have it all considered a massive failure. These days, MSG throws a confetti party for less than that.
Hate her all you want. She’s had a better decade than the Knicks.