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Considering the Knicks were 25-11 in front of either none or severely limited crowds, surely the crowd capacity increase can do nothing but help New York.
And Tom Thibodeau agrees.
“We feel very strongly about our fans. We feel that we have the best fans in the world. Obviously, we have the most famous arena, and we know what the Knicks mean to this city, so we’re looking forward to it. We’re excited about the playoffs, and we know we’re gonna have to bring our best," he told reporters on Friday.
The head coach felt his players won't need much adjusting to the crowd increase, since it's something they've been used to before.
“I think the bigger adjustment was probably playing without the fans," Thibodeau said. "I think everyone’s used to playing with the fans. We’re excited about it. Towards the end, you started to see more fans in the building. And sometimes, you don’t realize how much you miss them. I know when we played in Phoenix, they had a great crowd. It was just great to see things sort of getting back to normal."
The Knicks and Hawks will kick off their first round series at Madison Square Garden on Sunday night at 7 p.m.