Thu Dec 29 04:15pm EST
The Golden State Warriors are working with a 2-1 record following Wednesday night's dismantling of the New York Knicks, and though it's a little early in the season for bulletin board material, did an ill-considered blog post by a Knick beat writer help push the W's into the W column?
Perhaps the Warriors themselves weren't spurred on as much, but a post from Marc Berman of the New York Post from Wednesday took a needless (and wholly undeserved, on several levels) shot at Golden State's fan base:
"The Knicks start their road trip tonight in Oakland, where, according to reports, [David] Lee still plies his trade in a lousy basketball town. It's California Dreamin' for the Knicks as they play out 2011 in Cali on their lone Western trip of the lockout-shortened season. Three games in four nights — getting the Lakers in Hollywood tomorrow and Sacramento on New Year's Eve. It is the end of 2011, but the very beginning for these Knicks."
It's a throwaway line, to be sure, but to call Oakland (or the Bay Area including San Francisco) "a lousy basketball town" is absolutely ridiculous. As the New York Times' Howard Beck pointed out, hours before the Warriors piled on the team David Lee used to ply his trade for, Berman "must have slept through 2007," when the "We Believe" Warriors were the story of that season's postseason despite bowing out in the second round.
The San Francisco Chronicle's Rusty Simmons tried to draw a direct line between Berman's post and the Warrior win, pointing out the frenzied sell-out crowd (which, to these ears, was a little louder than the home crowds that showed up for Golden State games against the Los Angeles Clippers and Chicago Bulls earlier this week) seemed louder than usual. He quoted David Lee as saying that the crowd "really willed" the Warriors down the stretch, all while referencing Berman's post.
Of course, all of this could be ridiculous. Berman's post didn't actually make the Post, it was posted on the Post's website. And Berman of the Post was likely none too proud of his one-off line once he not only thought back to 2007, but to all the other years that saw terrible Warrior teams greeted by massive crowds. As one Tweeter pointed out to Beck on Wednesday, the Warriors and Knicks attendance levels are quite comparable over the last few seasons.
Perhaps Berman only meant that the Bay Area was a lousy basketball burgh because the Warriors themselves have been pretty lousy for years. Well, the Knicks have been pretty awful as well, until last season. Would that make New York City a "lousy basketball town?" Only the Post knows.