The New York Knicks lost their last game against the Phoenix Suns, 132-96. This game result is only a microcosm of problems surrounding the Knicks this season.

Fans and ownership will argue that the team has sold out in order to compete in the free agent sweepstakes this summer. It’s definitely a valid reason. However, the season is still in progress and the Knicks are not playing with any sort of emotion. The lone bright spot on the team has been forward David Lee(20 PPG, 11RPG). Outside of Lee, the Knicks have been awful. Given their shortcomings this season, who’s fault is it?

Suspect #1: Coach Mike D’Antoni

D’Antoni has always been an ‘offense-first’ type of coach. The Knicks are averaging 101.6 PPG, 11th best in the league. D’Antoni’s ‘fast-break’ style of offense has made the team seemingly one-dimensional. The Knicks are shooting only 34% from behind the arc (7th worst in the league) and grabbing only 23% of offensive rebounds(4th worst in the league).

Defensively, the Knicks have been abysmal. They are giving up 104.5 PPG, (5th worst in the league). They are only rebounding 47% of missed shots(league average is around 50%) and have been allowing opponents to shoot 47.7% from the field, (5th worst in the league).

There’s no excuse for the way that the Knicks have been playing. It’s the coach’s job to motivate the players and have them play better defense. D’Antoni does not have direct control over team acquisitions, but Donnie Walsh has given D’Antoni some respectable parts(McGrady) to use in this transition year. D’Antoni has been almost indifferent to change his lack-luster defensive approach. This team should not be allowing 104.5 PPG. D’Antoni has failed the Knicks and the fans of New York this season.

Suspect #2: Donnie Walsh

Team President Donnie Walsh wants LeBron James. He has made it clear the team will do whatever they need to do to acquire James. He has cleared enough cap room to add James and another ‘max-contract’ free agent. At the expense of potentially adding LeBron James, he has put a marginal club on the floor. Make no mistake about it, the Knicks have not been good since Patrick Ewing retired. Adding LeBron James will bring a new buzz to New York. It’s a calculated risk that Walsh is taking, but one that this lack luster franchise needs. Adding James will ultimately vindicate Walsh. The last ten years will be forgotten if LeBron James is wearing orange and blue in October.

Who’s To Blame: Mike D’Antoni

The uninspiring play this season is solely Mike D’Antoni’s fault. The Knicks have some good players, but he has not been able to get this team to play as a unit. Even in this transition year, Donnie Walsh has given D’Antoni some respectable players. D’Antoni must add a new defensive outlook or his tenure in the Big Apple will come to end.

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