Our series on the four jerseys fans of every NBA team continues today. It’s Atlantic Division week, and today we’re focusing on the New York Knicks. Remember, we’re not just going to list off four popular players in team history. We know that when you’re wearing a jersey, you’re going for a “look.” So every day we’re going to tell you the jersey you’ve got to have, the jersey you can’t go wrong with (in case you can’t find the first one), the jersey that will make people say “Oh, that’s awesome,” and the joke jersey that will have everyone laughing.
The Knicks are a team rich in history. One of the original NBA teams, the Knicks provide a long list of players from which to choose. But the history is also a bit tortured. With only two championships, none since 1970, the Knicks have a lot of heroes, goats and jokes. But here are the four names that rise above all others.
You Gotta Have:
Patrick Ewing — Ewing IS the Knicks. Unless you’re a teenager, you can’t picture the Knicks without picturing Ewing (and the sweatbands and knee pads). For nine straight seasons, he was a 20-10 guy. The Knicks were a playoff team in all but two years of his career there. Twice the Knicks got to the Finals, Twice they got to the Conference Finals. There are a lot of “what if’s” when it comes to Ewing’s time in the Big Apple (most of them have to do with Michael Jordan) but Ewing stands above all others in the “gotta have” category.
You Can’t Go Wrong With:
Bernard King — King bounced around a little bit, but he’s known primarily for his time with the Knicks. Those were his best years, and he’s probably the best flat-out scorer the Knicks have ever had. He’s the only Knick to ever average more than 30 points per game in a single season, and hew as the author of this 60 point virtuoso performance against the Nets. Who knows what would have happened had he not blown out his knee. The bottom line, though, is that King was one of the NBA’s best during the NBA’s hey day in the mid-80’s, so you can’t go wrong with his #30.
“Oh, That’s Awesome”:
Walt Frazier — Much like Tommy Heinsohn for the Celtics, Frazier’s appeal with Knicks fans works backwards from the broadcast booth to his playing days. Again working backwards, the Clyde we see today is the guy who dresses in wild suits, pitches hair dye for men, and uses language so colorful it needs its own dictionary. But back in his day, he was a key component to both Knicks championship teams. He had a six-year stretch of averaging 20+ points per game. But he wasn’t just a scorer. Clyde dropped four career playoff triple-doubles too. Oh, and he was a pimp back then too. They just don’t come any cooler than Clyde.
“Oh, That’s Funny”:
Eddy Curry — This was a tough one. Curry maybe be more of a symbol of Isiah Thomas’ incompetence than anything. But when you’re going for the joke, strolling along 42nd with a #34 on your chest will definitely get the laugh. Let’s face it, the Eddy Curry story is simple: The guy got too fat for basketball. If you proudly rock the Curry jersey and tell people “one of these days, he’s going to eat some broccoli… and then WATCH OUT!”… you’ll get the laugh you’re looking for.
Besides, if you don’t laugh at the Eddy Curry era in New York, you might cry. Laughing is better for the soul.
There you have it. The four jerseys Knicks fans have got to have. Disagree with us? Let us know who we missed in the comments.
Tomorrow: The Philadelphia 76ers
Jeff Garcia collaborated on this post