I have to agree with Felton on this one. Since the Brooklyn Nets made the big move this summer of trading for Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry, the talk about New York basketball has reached new heights. If your a fan of either team you have many reasons to be excited for next season. Paul Pierce has made it even better with his trash talking about the Knicks in the media. But while doing an interview this week, Raymond Felton made a very good point. Hit the jump to see what he said.
Felton was quoted:
“Especially with Paul Pierce talking all this junk, each and every week, saying something on some show, some radio show or whatever, it’s just boosting the rivalry, without a doubt,” Felton said. “Like I say to people all the time, I don’t care what Brooklyn do, I don’t care if they have a better record than we do this year, we still got ‘New York’ on our chest. We’re still New York’s team, regardless of what Brooklyn do. It just is what it is.”
Now, full disclosure, I am a Knicks fan, but I really do agree with Felton when he says even if the Nets have a better record, the Knicks are still New York’s team. Main reason for that is the number of Knicks fans compared to Nets fans throughout New York is still lopsided. While the Nets have attracted alot of attention and fanfare, if you did a poll with NY sports fans, the number of people who still go with the Knicks would dwarf the Nets. The other reason is as a franchise, you can’t just move into a new city and automatically assume you have a rivalry with the team that has been there. You have to show you can be a competitive team for a while before you are just blessed with having a rivalry with one of the most storied franchises in the NBA. That goes for all sports, not just basketball. Look how long it took for there to be an actual rivalry in Los Angeles with the Lakers and Clippers. Now if the Nets show they can put together a bunch of at least decent seasons and start getting deep in the playoffs, well that will be a different story. But for now I think any realistic basketball fan would say New York is the Knicks town.