Sep 25, 2013; New York, NY, USA; President and CEO of cablevision systems corporation and executive chairman of The Madison Square Garden company James Dolan speaks during a press conference to announce the 2015 NBA All-Star weekend in New York City at Industria Superstudio. The skill competition will be held at the Barclays Center and the All-Star game will be held at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

New York Knicks: Santa, Dolan just doesn’t get the point


With Christmas upon us, I asked Santa, in the form of a letter for a point guard.  I know it isn’t proper to share my deepest feelings, but James Dolan has been the Grinch this holiday.

Imagine a trade was done for Kyle Lowry, the same Lowry that scored 22 points a few nights ago and made two key foul shots to win the game. Last night he scored 23 points with nine assists.

Dec 10, 2013; Cleveland, OH, USA; New York Knicks point guard Raymond Felton during a game against the Cleveland Cavaliers at Quicken Loans Arena. Cleveland won 109-94. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Now although the New York Knicks won last night 103-98, it was a nail biter.  Raymond Felton almost handed the Orlando Magic the game. He had three crucial turnovers almost back to back to back.  He started to wilt under the pressure without Jason Kidd or Carmelo Anthony to bail him out.  Felton finished minus-8 in a game the Knicks almost led the entire night.

Then came Felton’s injury which may have saved the win.  Beno Udrih came in and had two quick assists to Andrea Bargnani.  He began to penetrate and the fear left the faces of the Knicks.  Udrih was a plus -13, offset that that with Felton’s minus-8 and that is a 21 point difference.

He capped off his effort by going 6-for-6 from the foul line, clutch free throws that sealed the game.  Listen, I hope Felton is OK. I hope he heals fast. I would just prefer him in a Raptor uniform.

If Felton would have continued to play the Knicks would not have won last night.  He complains on every call, he acts like a superstar and has never even been an all-star.

Like many Knick fans, I need the Knicks to win to enjoy my holiday.  I can only watch so much of the Hallmark Channel.  I look forward to my Jameson on the rocks and the MSG network. The holidays and Knicks, it used to be so perfect.

Now, every day is a crisis.  Is Woodson in, is he out?  Is Carmelo staying or leaving? Are Amar’e Stoudemire’s knees ok?  What about Metta World Peace knees? Each day I look to the New York Post, ESPN, etc., for news of a trade, a news that change is on the way.  And each day nothing.

So I went in my office and wrote the following letter.

Dear Santa:

Santa, I know I haven’t written you in a while. It’s not that I don’t believe, that I have lost faith in you, I just thought , that now that I was the father of the family; I could do it on my own.

Well Santa, I was wrong, I can’t and I need your help and I need it now.

Santa here is your chance to make millions of people happy; yes one gift can change the lives of millions of people.  Even Alan Hahn, would have to tweet about your generous gift. A gift that could change the year, make the year for all of New York.

Imagine Santa, this year the Yankees didn’t even make the playoffs.  The Giants will not make the playoffs and now if you don’t help, the Knicks we will be out of the postseason.

Santa, if only we had a point guard, we could compete, we could maybe keep Anthony and win some games.  Maybe we could make the playoffs.

Santa, Raymond Felton, is a good guy, a decent point guard, but he will not lead this team to the promise land.  He had multiple chances, he just hasn’t produced. Maybe you can find a new home for him, a home closer to you, maybe in Toronto.

Santa, we need help, to date, this Knick team ranks 19th in offensive efficiency and 24th in defensive efficiency. They’re 8-18 and in possession of the league’s sixth-worst record. They had to go to double overtime to beat the team with the worst record.  A team whose leading scorer was out, a team that had the last shot to win the game, but just couldn’t convert.

Santa, reporters can blame the poor season on injuries, but injuries are a part of the game in today’s NBA.  Woodson has not coached his guards well, or utilized them properly.  He played Felton when he was injured.  He didn’t play Pablo Prigioni the minutes he earned, the minutes he deserved until Felton went down.

He stole Iman Shumpert’s mojo and like Sampson without his hair, he is not the same player.  He lets J.R. Smith do what he wants whenever he wants, shoot whenever he wants and rarely rests him, even when he is shooting well.  He continues to stunt the growth of Tim Hardaway Jr., by not playing him the minutes he needs to grow, the minutes he has earned. The backcourt is a mess.

Santa, Woodson has given Smith the longest leash of any Knick not named “Carmelo Anthony.” Woodson usually continually turns a blind eye to Smith’s on-court play, while berating other players.

Santa this is Christmas and we need your help.  The mental fortitude and leadership that led last year’s team to 54 wins is gone.  He moved to Brooklyn under the name of Jason Kidd. He and Rasheed Wallace would’ve prevented this current slump, they, not Woodson made the players accountable.

It is not by accident they are both coaching this year and both their prospective teams have better records than the Knicks. So the Knicks are not only finished, the chance of making the playoffs, yet alone winning a championship.

So Santa, I turn to you.  A trade was done, all Dolan had to do was approve it.  Instead, his ego continues to haunt us.  He continues to be the Grinch of Christmas.

The holidays are a type for hope, a time for giving.  Dolan needs to listen to his fans and look at the standings.  Especially with a game on Christmas Day, on national television, what better gift could you give us than a point guard?

So Santa, I beg of you, get us a point guard this Christmas, someone to lead this team, to penetrate to score, to help us win games.  I know you are busy this time of year but the city of New York needs you.”

Your Friend in Health

Dr. Eric Kaplan

P.S. My rabbi approved and agreed with this letter.

Dr. Eric Kaplan is a bestselling author www.5minutemotivator.com

Follow him n Twitter @drekaplan

Tags: Featured James Dolan Kyle Lowry Mike Woodson New York Knicks Popular Raymond Felton

  • Bears

    Happy Holidays! Let me first say that I am a Raptors fan but I am an NBA fan first. I had the chance to spend time in NY and watch the Knicks play the Pacers at MSG during last year’s playoffs. Great experience, great fans, and great city.
    I have no doubt that Lowry would be an upgrade over Felton. Lowry has really matured over the last two seasons. Most notable improvement in Lowry’s game has been his ability to run the team. He can score, and he’s a great defender. In my opinion, Lowry and Amir Johnson are the best players on the Raptors (for what it’s worth).
    Raptors fans are divided, some are pro-tank and some are pro-”win-now”. Personally, I’m pro-tank and would like to see Lowry traded. That said, the Knicks will have two major issues with the trade for Lowry. First issue, is that Lowry is a Free-Agent after this season. Unless the Knicks can lock him up long term, this would be an expensive “rental”. The second issue, is that Knicks don’t really have the assets to trade for Lowry unless they’re willing to part with their 2018 first round pick. I don’t think Masai Ujiri is going to throw away Lowry just to lose games, he will want assets back. This latter issue will actually limit the Knicks’ chances to make a trade with any other team as well.