The Giants signed Brandon Marshall this week, which means they signed the kind of big fast wide receiver Eli Manning has always loved, and maybe needed, and got a lot better in the process, especially when you imagine Marshall lining up on the other side of the field from Odell Beckham Jr.
The Mets will begin the season with great promise, and all those young arms, and the Yankees hope they have enough pitching to go with all the stick they are showing from their young guys in spring training. So the city’s baseball teams have hope for this season and there is already hope about next season for the Giants, who would very much like to make it back to the Super Bowl before Eli is pushing 40 the way his old friend Tom Brady is.
Hope is always the real coin of the realm in sports, and the idea it brings with it for fans that their team will be better this season than it was last season.
But what if you are a fan of the Jets, or the Knicks? Where is the hope for you these days?
With the Jets and the Knicks what possible proof is there that things are going to become markedly better anytime soon? You know what fans of those teams have to hope sometimes? That there was a way to replace the current management of their team, and that means coaches too.
(Yeah, that means you, too, Jeff Hornacek, even if you are trapped now in a spooky, half-triangle world. You don’t get a pass on a season that has seen so many last-second losses for the Knicks that fans get dizzy just trying to remember them all.)
We all know where the Knicks are right now with Phil Jackson in charge, a former coach masquerading as a team president; what the Knicks have become on his watch. Give Jackson every break as you analyze his record since he was announced as the Knicks’ Chief Operating Savior three years ago this month. Give him the 10-5 finish under Mike Woodson, a better coach than any Jackson has hired since, the only coach since Jeff Van Gundy has been a winner at Madison Square Garden.
Even with that, here are the results, in a results business: Over the first 245 games that Jackson has been in charge, the team’s record is 85-160. Over the same number of games, from the time Isiah Thomas took over the running of the team in December of 2003, Thomas’ record as the Knicks’ Chief Operating Savior was 96-149. The Thomas era, of course, all the way through when he became the coach of the team, is considered one of the great disasters in Knicks’ history.
And Isiah’s record, same number of games, is nine games better than Jackson’s is. Isiah finally got fired. You wonder what it will take for James L. Dolan to tell Phil it is time to go. You wonder if there is another figure in the NBA, just one who didn’t win all those titles in Chicago and Los Angeles, who would keep a job running an NBA team with the record Jackson has put together since he came riding back to New York in March of 2014, and had everything at his introductory press conference except a choir of angels.
Remember when Dolan so happily told his friends in the media that his stock answer to questions about the Knicks would now be “Ask Phil”?
You wonder what questions Dolan himself is asking Phil Jackson about the Knicks’ record, about that culture change Jackson promised us, about what his plan is to get the Knicks out of this mess. Before long it will be one victory in a playoff series in 17 seasons for the New York Knicks. And Jackson, despite his coaching legend, looks like just one more New York sports executive whose plan is to get to the next plan. While fans still keep filling the Garden to watch one losing season after another.
His Knicks are now 75 games under .500 since he took over and, again, that’s being generous because that 10-5 stretch under Mike Woodson is as good as anything Dolan or Jackson or Knicks fans have seen since. We always hear about the bright future that Jackson is going to assemble around Kristaps Porzingis. Watch Porzingis play these days, and tell me if you think he’s enjoying the experience of being a Knick; tell me if you think he’s gotten a lot better playing basketball under the hybrid offensive scheme that the firm of Jackson and Hornacek has put together. But at least the Knicks have a kid in Porzingis people want to watch. If you’re a Jets fan, who do you want to watch now? Who is the player that you use to justify whatever you are paying for tickets, or for your PSL? What is the future of your team, immediate or long-range, without a quarterback in a quarterback league and – stop me if you’ve heard this one before – without a star quarterback anywhere in sight?
The previous administration turned out to be wrong about Mark Sanchez, who was going to be a star because he helped the Jets to two straight AFC championship games in his first two seasons, and now is essentially unemployable in the NFL except as a backup. It set the Jets back years. So they were wrong about him and wrong about Geno Smith and the new regime is wrong about the young quarterbacks they have drafted lately. Things are so bleak with them that Jets fans were supposed to weep and throw themselves about because Mike Glennon, a household name in the Glennon household, is on his way to the Chicago Bears.
You want to know where the Jets really are right now with quarterbacks? Of all the guys out there, the best option for them is probably Colin Kaepernick, everybody’s All-America. Not only that, Kaepernick, even with all of his baggage, is the best option out there by a lot, even as we start to hear that they’re dreaming about Sam Darnold, the kid from USC who won’t be available for another year. Darnold is supposed to be a sure thing out of LA. Yeah, him and Sanchez both.
So that’s where they are. All you have to do is look at the standings to see where the Knicks are. This is supposed to be the time of the year when there is hope everywhere in sports and, you know, springing eternal. Tell that to Jets fans. Tell that to fans of the New York Knicks.
Draymond’s self-control, sell Prokie sell & Ernie’s still a Wiz . . .
– So Draymond Green, who likely cost his team a championship by being called for one too many flagrant 1 fouls and getting suspended from Game 5 of the NBA Finals, now has 12 technical fouls this season.
Same church, different pew.
Obviously, though, Draymond has learned valuable lessons about self-control.
This guy Scott Pruitt, who doesn’t believe in climate change but gets to run the EPA, anyway — where did Trump find him, at a goober convention?
I keep thinking they’re eventually going to set one of those “CSI” shows in the Knicks’ front office.
I just want Alex Rodriguez to be happy.
And it’s good to know that he’s found some time for himself, and for Jennifer Lopez, around his busy mentoring program with the Yankees.
Is everything still Carmelo’s fault?
I always think Villanova has a chance as long as Josh Hart is in the game.
– Isn’t there some way we can convince Prokhorov to sell the Nets?
Just as a way of finally bringing pro basketball to the borough of Brooklyn?
We always talk about Ernie Accorsi making one of the great trades in New York sports history to get Eli.
The opposite of that is the trade the Nets once made for Pierce and Garnett.
What vibe is the universe giving Dr. Jill Stein, a nuisance from the last Presidential election, that it gives a rip what she thinks about anything?
– When we talk about baby steps with Tim Tebow, I’m just assuming we mean the ones from one on-deck circle to the one in which he actually belongs.
Remember how Kiefer Sutherland used to save the world when he was Jack Bauer?
He made need to do that again with “24: Legacy” if they don’t pick up the pace a little bit.
The Joakim Noah money is the best Phil has spent since Derek Fisher.
Go ahead and bet against Duke after what they did against Louisville and Carolina this week.
Come on, you don’t think it’s time to turn Sean Spicer’s daily session with the media into a musical?
I’m just waiting as patiently as I can for Season 3 of “Bosch.”
– Part 1 of David Feherty’s interview with Phil Mickelson was great.
But then Feherty does a lot of that.
Great, I mean.
How’s that great big Watergate-like wiretapping case against Barack Obama working out for everybody?
If it takes the World Baseball Classic to put Jim Leyland back in the dugout, then I really am good with the World Baseball Classic.
If you love tennis, how can you not love The Tennis Channel?
– The job Scott Brooks has done with the Washington Wizards is one of the stories of the NBA season.
But if you are going to talk about the Wizards’ coach, you also have to talk about Ernie Grunfeld, the guy who runs that operation.
A long time after he left the Knicks, Ernie is still swinging away, isn’t he?
Martellus Bennett is a big player who is a big, smart play by the Packers.
How about this?
How about Jeff Sessions goes and Prett Bharara stays?
How would that be?
I’m serious about the Latvian kid: Raise a hand if you think he’s gotten better this season.
I just can’t imagine why everybody is so upset about a Republican health care plan that looks as if it was put together with an Uber car waiting outside the Capitol building.
If Muhammad Ali Jr. gets questioned at another airport, he gets a chance to give his family another title, right?
Published at Sun, 12 Mar 2017 05:37:49 +0000