The New York Knicks struggles have become so pronounced even owner James Dolan is openly ushering some fans to change their allegiance.
Reports are Dolan recently fired off an angry letter to a longtime fan who dared to criticize his Knickerbockers. In the letter, Dolan taunts the man with the direct missive “start rooting for Nets because the Knicks don’t won’t you.”
Given their 10-41 struggles, some might think the Knicks would be looking for all the support they can find. When New York visits Miami Monday night, tickets will be going for an average of $186 with a get-in on $36. Two night later, they’ll be in Orlando to face the Magic, where prices are set at an average of $101 and a minimum of $21.
They’ll return after the break and host LeBron and Cleveland for a matchup with the Cavaliers. The cheapest tickets are going for around $50, and there is on-demand NYC parking available for as low as $20 per spot.
President of basketball operations Phil Jackson and rookie coach Derek Fisher can only hope a swing through Florida serves to take some of the heat off Carmelo Anthony and Co., who are just 7-19 at Madison Square Garden this season.
It’s been all Anthony and little else for the Knicks, as the high-scoring, All-Star forward is the only member of the team averaging better than 12 points. Veteran forward Amare Stoudemire has arguably been the Knicks second most consistent player, but reports are he plans to use the upcoming weeklong All-Star break to decide if he wants to request the team buy out the remainder of his $100 million contract.
Even given their struggles, the Knicks probably won’t find much sympathy in South Beach, where Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are desperately trying to salvage their first season together without LeBron James.
Currently, Miami (21-29) is tied with Brooklyn for the Eastern Conference’s eighth and final playoff spot, but the Heat have lost three in a row and five of six. The veteran Wade is averaging 21 points, five assists and four rebounds for Miami, while Bosh is contributing 21 points, seven rebounds and two assists.
Still, the Heat’s struggles pale compared to their Floridian neighbors. Going into their Sunday night game against Chicago, the Magic had dropped 10 of 11, leading to the recent firing of coach Jacque Vaughn after less than three full seasons.