You may have noticed that for months now, when you turned on your television, the Knicks weren’t playing. It was an awful few months. But all that is over now.
Tonight, the Knicks play the Celtics at 7:30 PM. No, it won’t mean anything. Yes, it will feel a lot like rooting against the Brooklyn Nets wearing green uniforms.
It will be Knicks basketball. That alone is reason to celebrate, if you ask me.
Beyond that, what will I be watching for?
1. Carmelo Anthony’s shoulder: I know, he didn’t need surgery, he and the Knicks say. I’d like to see his shot look like it did last March and April before I conclude all is well with Melo.
2. Cole Aldrich: it’s a pretty big deal that Aldrich can come in and play effectively at the center position. Tyson Chandler needs down time to stay fresh, and Kenyon Martin is 35, and played 18 regular season games last year. How much he can withstand is a matter of some question, reinforced by the Knicks saying they’ll keep him out of the preseason. If Aldrich soaks up minutes without it ruining the Knicks when he’s out there, it will be enormous.
3. Prigioni and Felton, impressing: Chris Herring has been all over this. The Knicks have excelled with a two point guard set. But Mike Woodson has made it known he’d like to go with a more traditional lineup. It’s up to the two-PG set to remind him why he shouldn’t.
3a. Beno Udrih: a third PG playing well allows the Knicks to use that set more without running into depth/fatigue issues with Felton and Prigioni, the latter of whom is 36.
4. Andrea Bargnani: Seriously, what do they have here? How will they use him? I’m fascinated.
Other things will be huge, too, like the first time Tyson Chandler dunks and roars like a lion, how emotionally invested I should get in Ike Diogu, and the simple reality of Metta World Peace in a Knicks uniform on the court.
That’s me: what about you?