Watching the Knicks lose to the Cavaliers for the fourth time this season, I can't help but think that the surging 76ers look better. The 76ers play with heart, character and desire. Right now the Knicks look like an overrated bunch of talented individuals playing one on one selfish basketball. Sound familiar? Same old Knicks, different faces?
Dating back to games played on Nov. 27, Philly is tied for the seventh-highest winning percentage of any team in the league at 27-16.The Knicks have played .500 ball since the Carmelo trade and without their current MVP (IMO), Chauncey Billups, they look like a mediocre team. The Knicks don't play defense, and let's be honest. They won't until they get some new players or a new coach. Don't let the Heat game fool you. The Heat have also been mediocre recently, and the Knicks caught them at a good time.
Meanwhile, here for only six games, Chauncey has already proven to be the key to this team. He is a leader and the engine that makes the team go. He has won a title. He has been through the wars and proven himself over and over again. Without him, they seem lost. And just as I predicted, Carmelo's isolation style doesn't really fit into the D'Antoni offense, which preaches ball movement. But with Chauncey, they seem to get by because of this "big shot" ability, solid defense and leadership. If anything happens to their new leader...if this leg injury lingers...they are in trouble. The 76ers will overtake them for the 6th spot in the conference and they may slip out of the playoff race. But with him, they could be a special team. He is that good.
Come back Chauncey. New York needs you.