HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — When Amar’e Stoudemire packed his bags and headed to New York from Phoenix, he didn’t plan on being in the conversation with the likes of the Los Angeles Clippers three weeks into the season.
Yet here he is, drowning in the Knicks’ spin cycle of losing that is already in full swing. They’ve lost five straight games, joining the Clippers and Sacramento Kings on the league’s current list of the lowest of the low.
But no one expected the Clippers and Kings to be fighting for elbow room in the playoff chase this season. The Knicks, on the other hand, appeared to be poised for a move up the charts. Instead, they’re stuck trying to figure out which way is up while Stoudemire is struggling to come to grips with losing.
He described his current predicament to the New York media as a “foreign land,” and is already talking about how the Knicks have to stick together so they can turn their season around. More from Frank Isola of the New York Daily News:
“I don’t understand why we’re not playing with the urgency,” Stoudemire said. “I’m not used to it. We’re not playing like we’re on a four-game losing streak, now five. It’s almost as if it doesn’t matter. It’s not something that I’m used to.
“I can’t keep saying the exact same things. I keep saying it but we’re not having (a) reaction.”
Stoudemire suggested that maybe he’s talking “too much,” since his message is apparently falling on deaf ears.
“Maybe it’s the fact that the winning mentality has never been here,” he said of a franchise that has suffered nine straight losing seasons. “I’m used to winning. Used to talking about winning. We just can’t have guys complacent and comfortable with losing. I keep saying that.”
While Stouedmire adjusts to his new surroundings his old mates in Phoenix seem to be adjusting just fine … though we suspect he knew that already.
While they might not be the powerhouse they were when he was there — a return trip to the Western Conference finals this season seems like a stretch — they don’t seem to have any problem with their attitude.
And they certainly look like they know how to win.