New-look Knicks not there yet

(Bill Kostroun)

Kristaps Porzingis threw down a one-handed jam just as the buzzer sounded and Madison Square Garden erupted. This is what Knicks fans have been waiting for; an entertaining team that refuses to quit and some excitement at the Garden. Wednesday's game against the Bulls was competitive and fun to watch.

Then, a costly mistake by one of their most consistent players cost the Knicks a victory.

There is no denying that New York City loves the Knicks. The argument has been made before that this is a basketball town and that argument is strongest when the Knicks are winning. After a hot start though, wins have been few and far between.

Porzingis is a one-of-a-kind player. Jarrett Jack and Michael Beasley are having resurgent seasons. Frank Ntilikina has shown flashes of what he is capable of and a few of these late-game collapses might have been avoided if Tim Hardaway Jr. was healthy. However, there is a very fine line between competing and winning and, as it currently consists, this team is just good enough to compete.

There is enough parity in the Eastern Conference that the Knicks could squeak into the playoffs as a seven or eight seed. Considering what this fan base has been through in recent years, that would be a huge improvement as long as fans can temper their expectations.

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