This game isn’t going to happen. It’s supposed to be the first day of the new season, the day the Knicks defend home court against Miami on ESPN and give their fans the first in what could be a string of memorable moments this year, and it isn’t going to happen. I guess I’m supposed to be picking my most important dates based on their importance to the Knicks’ season, but no day is going to affect us like that first day of missed games. That the first game we lose is one of the marquee games of the year is salt in the wound.
The two sides are no closer to an agreement than Stephon Marbury to an NBA roster. Owners and players insist their financial solvency rests on hammering out a deal, and in the same breath table negotiations until August. Similarly insulting is the both sides’ business-as-usual attitude: the league released its schedule, the coaching carousel is in full swing, players are flocking to European teams to lock down a steady paycheck – really everything you’d expect to be happening right now except, you know, negotiating a new CBA. It’s enough to make a disillusioned NBA fan, who knows the stupidity of the players is matched only by that of their employers, wonder if they want a deal to get done at all.
The NFL lockout is over; by the time football resumes we’ll have forgotten it ever happened. The same could be true of the NBA, but on November 2nd it all becomes real. Whether the Knicks play or not, it’s the biggest day of the season.