September 27, 2010
This is the first time in quite a few years that Knicks fans could be genuinely excited about their team. After years of mismanagement, atrocious contracts and whatever it was that Isiah Thomas was doing, New York's basketball team looks to have metaphorically turned a metaphorical corner. They've got a bunch of new players who are going to fit very well in Mike D'Antoni's up-tempo. Furthermore, even though they won't contend for a title, they'll be better than they have been in ages. Considering it has been 10 seasons since they've had a winning campaign, things are looking up.
Then there's Eddy Curry(notes), who is still a Knick and still acting like it's 2008. The New York Times' Howard Beck has a pretty awesome rundown of Curry's yikes-inducing performance at this year's Knicks training camp.
Through two days of practice, Curry has been relegated to the third unit, with the rookies and free-agent invitees. He has slogged through drills. On Saturday night, he was lapped by an entire group of players as they weaved through cones around the court.
By the end of Sunday's practice, the third of camp, Curry was a spectator, watching his teammates jog with medicine balls while he stood near a basket stanchion. He is nursing a tight hamstring, making this the third straight camp that Curry has been injured.
"Obviously, we're pushing these guys hard," Coach Mike D'Antoni said. "He misses anything, it just makes it a little bit tougher."
Asked if Curry was already behind, D'Antoni said, "Well, yeah."
Nice. Just how every team wants their second highest-paid player to start training camp — playing with rookies and Patrick Ewing, Jr. Not to mention, I'm not even sure how you can get lapped in a cone drill, but it's good to see that Curry figured it out. Classic.
At least he's in shape though. Except, the opposite of that, naturally.
Curry reported to camp weighing 325 pounds - a 20-pound increase since April - according to a person in the organization.
Team officials had asked Curry to come back closer to 300 pounds. They also asked him to attend voluntary workouts in July and September. Curry never showed. He was the only player not to attend voluntary workouts and scrimmages this month.
Curry stayed home in July to be with family after the birth of his son. He said he stayed in New York for two months last spring but chose to work out on his own over the summer, with a trainer in Ocean City, N.J.
"It's just what I wanted to do," he said last week.
On one hand, it's hard to blame the guy for wanting to be around his newborn son. Little kids are pretty great, and they're certainly more fun than getting in NBA basketball condition. But on the other hand, if you happen to live in or around Ocean City, N.J. do not hire Eddy Curry's trainer because whoever that is doesn't seem to understand what the point of training is. Or, I guess, it's possible that Curry wasn't really pushing himself during his workouts, but that doesn't sound like him. He's usually very dedicated to maintaining his body.
Luckily for the Knicks, this is the last year of Curry's contract. Sure, they have to pay him $11.3 million to sit on the bench, but they're pretty much used to that anyway.