Can the paying customers at the World’s Most Dysfunctional Arena be blamed if they’re a tad frustrated with the home team’s won-loss record since the arrival of Carmelo Anthony / departure of 4 starters? Following a torrid shooting display by Toney Douglas against Memphis last night, head coach Mike D’Antoni once again revealed an unusually thin skin for a guy who was paid a ton of money to tank successive seasons. From the New York Times’ Howard Beck :
Thirteen games into the Stoudemire-Anthony experiment — and 15 games from the finish line — the Knicks are straddling the uncomfortable space between expectations and fundamental realities. The public expects a juggernaut, no matter how many times the Knicks insist they need time to establish an identity.
Before the game, D’Antoni acknowledged the fans’ anxiety and tried to calm the waters.
“It’s great — they care,” he said, before adding a bit of wry advice. “You know, take some Prozac or something. Hang in there. We’re hanging in there. We’re pedaling as fast as we can pedal.”
He acknowledged “some deficiencies, some holes,” particularly on defense — a weakness that has been demonstrably worse since the trade.
“The biggest thing is not to panic,” D’Antoni said, adding, “We’re not as good as we will be.”
Given the easy availability of handguns around the NYC area, I’m not sure D’Antoni’s suggestion is the most helpful he could make.