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How Knicks and Nets unwittingly created the NBA juggernauts

How Knicks and Nets unwittingly created the NBA juggernauts
Published On: Sun, May 28
Jan 3, 2016; New York, NY, USA; Atlanta Hawks forward Kent Bazemore (24) drives against NewYork Knicks forward Derrick Williams (23) during the fourth quarter at Madison Square Garden. New York Knicks won 111-97. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

With June approaching, that emptiness every New York basketball fan has felt since 2003 is returning.

Here come the NBA Finals. Where are the Knicks and Nets?

Right, lounging.

The Nets last made the Finals in 2003 and lost to the Spurs, the team that beat the Knicks in their most recent Finals run in 1999. If you really need a fix, the Knicks and Nets contributed much to the third-time showdown between the defending champ Cavaliers and Warriors. The Finals are loaded with Knicks and Nets connections.

Cavaliers

Channing Frye

The Knicks drafted him eighth in 2005. An All-Rookie Team selection, he averaged 10.8 points in two seasons.

Wait, he was serious? Frye was yanked from the starting lineup in February 2007 for Jerome James whom then-coach Isiah Thomas called one of the best defensive big men in the game. He wasnt.

Richard Jefferson

The Nets got him, Jason Collins and Brandon Armstrong, on draft night 2001 for Eddie Griffin. Jefferson played from 2001-08 with the Nets, twice going to the Finals.

Made his mark: Jefferson ranks in the Nets career top 10 in 17 categories, including points (fourth), assists (seventh), games, (ninth) and rebounds (10th).

Dahntay Jones

The journeyman forward signed a make-good deal with the Nets in the 2015-16 preseason.

Didnt make good: Jones was waived in preseason by a team that eventually went 21-61.

Iman Shumpert

The combo guard, who was regarded for his defense, was picked No. 17 in 2011 and averaged 7.9 points over four seasons for the Knicks.

Lost time: Shumpert went down in the first round of the 2012 playoffs with a torn ACL but returned in January 2013.

J.R. Smith

He averaged 15.1 points in as a Knick from February 2012 to January 2015. He was traded to the Cavs with Shumpert in a three-team deal that landed Lance Thomas but cost two guards many see as good triangle fits.

Who can forget? In 2014, the NBA fined Smith $50,000 after untying Dallas Shawn Marions shoelaces and trying to do the same to Detroits Greg Monroe.

Read the complete news article here...


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