Of course it's not good news for a team when it learns that key players are injured.
It was clean-out-your-locker day for the New York Knicks on Monday in Tarrytown, with the group that went down in six games to the up-and-coming Indiana Pacers attempting to explain why they lost, and why a team full of aging veterans will do any better next season.
When the game was over, Indiana Pacers coach Frank Vogel made his way into the post-game press conference and took his seat at the podium. He knew what was coming. He set his face like a defender in the lane awaiting contact for a charge.
In a single, 102-95 loss to the Indiana Pacers in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals, the Knicks gave away the home court advantage they worked so hard for.
It was almost possible to hear the ledes constructed, on the spot, in the minds of reporters gathered around J.R. Smith, clad in all black to symbolize the death of the Boston Celtics, following the New York Knicks' 92-86 loss Wednesday night.
So much about the first round playoff series between the New York Knicks and Boston Celtics had been the mirror image of 2011, when a pair of stars—Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire then, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett now—couldn't measure up to a full team run by a dynamic point guard and danerous role players.
See if you can hear the change in Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers between what he said after Game 1 against the Knicks, and his reaction after Tuesday night's 87-71 loss at Madison Square Garden.
The playoff series between the New York Knicks and Boston Celtics, set to begin Saturday afternoon at Madison Square Garden, will be, according to just about everyone, a close one.
With just a few minutes remaining in the Knicks' 90-80 win over the Indiana Pacers Sunday, the overmatched Pacers cut what had been as much as a 20-point lead in the second quarter down to nine at one point in the fourth quarter, ten at another point.
The New York Knicks, winners of 13 straight, entered Thursday night's game against the Chicago Bulls with a minimal amount to play for.
With the postseason furiously approaching, the New York Knicks have been busy demonstrating that the early season success that raised expectations was no fluke.
A day after Carmelo Anthony demolished the (short-handed) Miami Heat with a 50-point performance, the Atlanta Hawks came in with a game plan designed to help them avoid the same fate.