“The Knicks are back.” Do you remember Amare Stoudemire making that insanely bold and completely false proclamation upon signing an insane $100 million contract with New York in July of 2010? It was easy to laugh and brush off the notion that one of the NBA’s most horrifically run organizations was finally out of the doldrums, but Amare at least had the balls to make NYC his basketball home. Unlike LeBron, Bosh & anyone else who grin fucked the Knicks that summer, Amare couldn’t cash James Dolan’s checks soon enough.
Stoudemire was lauded for accepting the challenge that comes with being the face of the Knicks. In reality, nobody else was throwing that kind of loot at him, so it was as much about the money, as resurrecting a stumbling franchise that’s still trying to win a playoff game since 2001 (12 straight losses and counting). As always, follow the money.
But a lot has changed since Amare was run into the ground in the first quarter of last season by Mike D’Antoni. Once Carmelo Anthony was brought to the concrete jungle by Dolan (the moronic Knicks owner), Amare’s standing as the face of the Knicks vanished quicker than his efforts on the defensive end of the floor.
A back injury made him a max spectator instead of a max player for the Knicks’ in last year’s playoffs sweep at the hands of the Celtics (38.2% shooting from the field, 67% from the free throw line & 14.5 points per game).
His numbers were down again this year thanks to his ever decaying body (17.5 ppg, 7.8 rpg & 48 % shooting), but his Knicks moment cam after the Knicks were finished embarrassing themselves in Miami in game 2. Amare punched a glass fire extinguisher case after the game, and could now miss the remainder of the series. You’re supposed to leave blood on the floor, Amare, not in the visiting locker room. Nice work, bro. However, the Twitter apology was a nice touch.
It’s bad enough that the Knicks are again making asses of themselves on the association’s biggest stage, but this is becoming a comedy act. The Knicks switched alpha dogs, styles of play, their coach & who gets the headlines at an alarming rate this year. What that has led to, is total dysfunction that culminated in Amare going all Mike Tyson after a indifferent 9 shot performance in game 2.
With his contract virtually immovable, his knees and back breaking down at a Sam Bowie rate, evidence that the Knicks are better without him & not much wiggle room under the salary cap (Amare has 3 years & nearly $65 million left on his deal), Amare has suddenly become an A-Roid like target for New Yorkers. It’s quite the turnaround from just over a year ago, but that’s how fickle fans and media are in NYC. And because of an asinine quick tempered punch, he deserves fans, media & his teammates to perceive him in a different light. New York can tear you down quicker than they build you up, and Amare’s selfish & immature act is again proving that theory correct.