New York Knicks: Three-game winning streak cause for concern?

Jan 23, 2015; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks guard Langston Galloway (2) drives past Orlando Magic guard Evan Fournier (10) during the fourth quarter at Madison Square Garden. Knicks won 113-106. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 23, 2015; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks guard Langston Galloway (2) drives past Orlando Magic guard Evan Fournier (10) during the fourth quarter at Madison Square Garden. Knicks won 113-106. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports /

The New York Knicks have won their last three games, but is that actually a bad thing for a team obviously trying to secure a top pick in the 2015 NBA Draft?

Well, well, well…

Just when we though the New York Knicks might never win again this season, the Knicks rattled off three straight wins and are now gaining on the Brooklyn Nets for the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference playoff race.

Okay, I lied about the last part, but New York is only ten games back of Brooklyn with 38 games to play. That’s pretty remarkable when you consider how bad the Knicks have been this season, right? Up until this week, the Knicks had only won five games.

In the the last week, New York has nearly doubled their season win total, and now have put their claim for the top pick in the  2015 NBA Draft in jeopardy.

It’s not that the Knicks are playing that much better, though. On Monday, the Knicks beat the New Orleans Pelicans without Anthony Davis.

On Wednesday, the Philadelphia 76ers gave the Knicks a win by missing five lay-ups in a span of six seconds.

It was just that kind of a day for the Sixers.

Then, surprisingly, the Knicks opened of a can of whoopie on the Orlando Magic on Friday.

So, what’s up with the Knicks?

After the game, Carmelo Anthony opened up about what he thinks is different about the Knicks.

“I think it’s just effort, energy, attention to details. I think the guys that have been helping us and contributing to these last couple of games, (those) guys are hungry. They’re showing it, they’re playing like it. They’re having a lot of fun. We’re having a lot of fun out there now. I think that comes with putting forth the effort and the energy and being able to see results from there,” Anthony said, according to

It’s amazing what’s possible when you try, huh?

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In his quote, Anthony is referring to the play of Lance Thomas and Langston Galloway, who are both on 10-day contracts and scored 16 points and 15 points, respectively, against the Magic.

So, if the Knicks are trying now, does that mean the Knicks aren’t going to have a top-5 pick in the NBA draft?

That’s where it starts to get dicey.

Anthony was selected as a starter for the All-Star Game, which is being held in New York and Brooklyn Feb. 13-15.

Anthony is going to play through the All-Star break, but then the Knicks are going to shut him down to get him the surgery he needs to clean up his knee. Then, Anthony can take the summer to recover and come back stronger next year.

I’ll be incredibly surprised if that isn’t the exact scenario that plays out over the next few weeks.

In the meantime, New York has something to play for, and I touched on it in the piece I wrote about Amar’e Stoudemire last week. In this makeshift roster the Knicks are using this season, each guy on the team, except for Carmelo, is playing for a new job and a new contract. That should be their motivation down the stretch to play well because I don’t think the Knicks are necessarily interested any of the players from this team, except, maybe, Tim Hardaway Jr. and, obviously, Anthony.

The Knicks three wins have moved them into a tie with the 76ers for last place in the East with the 76ers and one-game ahead of the Minnesota Timberwolves for the worst record in the league.

Over the next ten games leading up the All-Star Game, the Knicks have six very winnable games against teams outside of the playoff race and another against Brooklyn. If the Knicks can keep this winning streak alive, they could play their way out of a top pick in the draft before the All-Star break.

I know it’s not likely, but it is a cause for concern, if you (like me) were banking on the Knicks locking up a top-5 pick in the draft.

There are five teams (Sacramento, Utah, Boston, L.A. Lakers, Indiana, and Detroit) in the tier above the Knicks with less than 18 wins. If New York wins seven of their next ten games, although unlikely but still possible, the Knicks will be right in that group of teams whose pick will likely be out of the top-three and as lows as No.10. That’s a huge difference.

Hopefully, the Knicks don’t over-exert themselves in the next ten games leading up to the All-Star Game, but that appears to be what they’re doing now.

We’ll see what happens, but there’s a possibility this season could be a loss for the Knicks and then they won’t get a top draft pick either. That’s the worst-case scenario, and the Knicks are now flirting with it.

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