The New York Knicks may be worth watching this season due to the young talent and new system, but don’t expect them to win many games.
A small bit of advice for New York Knicks fans this season: Try not to put too much weight into wins and losses.
Neil Paine of FiveThirtyEight released his Way-Too-Early NBA Projections on Monday and the outlook isn’t very rosy for the team that calls Madison Square Garden home. The CARM-Elo projections have the Knicks finishing with a record of 25-57.
They only have a six percent chance to make the playoffs with less than a one percent chance to make the NBA Finals, let alone win the whole darn thing.
Projections are just that—projections. Nothing is set in stone and they play the games on the court. But this is a reminder for Knicks fans that basing the success of the season on wins and losses isn’t smart. If anyone is expecting (or even hoping for) a playoff appearance, I have a bridge to sell you.
This young team will have its ups and its downs. They’ll look incredibly youthful and exciting at times. But just as often (probably far more often) they’ll look young, inexperienced, and downright frustrating.
But that’s OK. That comes with the territory of developing a young team in a new system. Individual growth for the young players should take precedence over winning. Shooting for the playoffs is something the organization will talk about, but it’s not a realistic goal.
Conversely, these projections would look much different with a healthy Kristaps Porzingis. There isn’t another proven first option on this team and without KP, they could struggle on offense. Tim Hardaway Jr. is a nice offensive option, Enes Kanter is excellent in the post and on the boards, and Kevin Knox has all the makings of a star. But none of them are proven as a bonafide first option.
On the bright side, if the Knicks do finish last in the East and second-to-last in the NBA, they would reap the benefits of a high pick in the draft. Adding another key contributor through the draft and the possibility of a major free agent (or two) signing in New York makes the future look bright for the Knickerbockers.
The upcoming season won’t be filled with many victories, but the future remains bright.