Predicting the Final Record for the New York Knicks

By Nick Villano
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks had their best season since 1996-97 last year.  It was redemption for fans who have sat through the Isaiah Thomas and Larry Brown eras.  They have a good coach in Mike Woodson and a very good core that consists of Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler.

The moves they made in the offseason were interesting to say the least.  The biggest of those was trading three point specialist Steve Novak, Marcus Camby and three future picks for former No. 1 overall pick Andrea Bargnani.  The fit on this team is questionable at best.  J.R. Smith was brought back on a three-year contract, and they also brought back Kenyon Martin to play the pivotal role of letting Chandler rest as much as possible.  They added Ron Artest/Metta World Peace after he was amnestied by the Los Angeles Lakers and brought in Beno Udrih on a minimum contract. Tim Hardaway Jr. is another new addition out of Michigan via the draft.

They seem like they have a very good roster on paper, but how will that come out when the season starts?  They are playing in a much weaker Atlantic Division, even if the Brooklyn Nets got a lot better.  The Boston Celtics got a lot worse, the Philadelphia 76ers may be the worst team in the NBA, and the Toronto Raptors are in full on rebuilding mode, again.

They start the season off with a home game against the Milwaukee Bucks and then travel to face the Chicago Bulls.  They will go 1-1 and give Derrick Rose his first win after missing more than a year.

November is highlighted by a four game road trip, a visiting Indiana Pacers team that eliminated the Knicks last season, and Dwight Howard‘s first visit to New York as a member of the Houston Rockets.  In a relatively easy month, the Knicks will excel with an 8-4 record, making them 9-5 on the season.

December is highlighted with the Knicks’ first trip to Brooklyn.  What is quickly becoming one of the NBA’s biggest rivalries will continue into the 2013-14 season.  Christmas Day sees Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder for what will be a high scoring contest.  The biggest win of the month will come when they sweep the Raptors to end the month.  They will go 10-5 in the month making their season record 19-10 to end out 2013.

January will be tough for the Knicks.  This is where injuries will start to creep on them.  They will lose the first five games of the month, including the first meeting with the defending champion Miami Heat.  The New York media will claim that this team is in shambles and the sky will be falling at Madison Square Garden.  A seven game homestand to end the month will be just what the team needs as they will go 9-7 to end the month.  The biggest win will come against the Nets and the Los Angeles Clippers during their big homestand.

February will start with a huge win against the Heat that will help them throughout their season.  They will be up and down all month and end up 8-5.  Besides the big Heat win, they will also take a big game at home against the Dallas Mavericks.  After this month, they will be 36-23.

March will be strenuous on this Knicks team with 16 games in 30 days.  The best medication for exhaustion is winning.  The team will rally around itself and go 11-5 on the month to stand at 47-28 going into the final month.  They will look like one of the best teams in the league at this time.

They are going to back into the playoffs with a hard April that includes two games against the Nets, one each against the Bulls and Heat, and two against the Raptors.  The team will putter to a 3-4 record, making their final record 50-32 for the season.  They will be in a dogfight with the Nets for the division that will come down to the wire.  The Heat, Bulls and Pacers are going to grab the first three seeds in the Eastern Conference.  The Knicks will barely slip in at the four seed and face the Nets in the first round.  How far they go from there will only be told by how healthy they can stay.

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