Knicks Not Out Yet: Why New York Still Has Shot at Playoffs

Sam BlumCorrespondent IFebruary 20, 2010

NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 17:  David Lee #42 of the New York Knicks against the Chicago Bulls at Madison Square Garden on February 17, 2010 in New York, New York. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images

The Knicks may have lost their last eight of nine, they may have a struggling offense, an awful defense, and a frustrated coach, but they also have a shot.

It's not that hard to make the playoffs in the NBA; half the teams do it. Especially in the Eastern Conference, where some sub .500 teams find their way in, the field is always wide open. 

The Knicks have become a better team in the past week. Getting rid of Nate Robinson may have been hard, but he was more of a burden than anything else. Jared Jeffries departure was also a relief to this team. Darko Milicic is in Minnesota, which is important because his main role on the team was whining that he wanted out. Last but not least, Jordan Hill and Marcus Landry will be moving on to places where they aren't just bench warmers.

The positives in this trade come from getting Eddie House, who is a talented offensive player, and will work well in the Knicks system. He has the ability to put up big time numbers, and with the Knicks, he just might.

Getting Tracy McGrady was also a good move. He may not be what he used to be, but he will help the Knicks tremendously, as he is still a powerful offensive threat.

The Knicks also got an underrated player in Sergio Rodriguez who didn't see that much time with the Sacremento Kings, but has potential to be a very powerful threat on a team like the Knicks. 

The move will also give rookie Toney Douglas more time to mature on the court as he hasn't see much playing time as of late.

David Lee might have less of a burden on his back, as he won't be the team superstar anymore, but he will still be a key role in their starting lineup. 

What these trades also do is give the team some confidence. When you start to lose, it gets you into a funk that is sometimes hard to dig yourself out of. This team now has had a distraction, along with a new set of players who have experience winning basketball games. Now that the Knicks have a more winning mindset. 

Players like Chris Duhon, Danillo Gallinari, and even Al Harrington all have great potential, and if the team gets on a roll, they will be hard to stop. 

Look for the Knicks to be rejuvenated in the upcoming weeks as they push for the playoffs.