Top 4 Knicks of All-Time

The New York Knicks are one of the greatest franchises in NBA History. Over the last 70 years the Knicks have had their share of legendary players put on the blue and orange uniform. Here, in not particular order, are the top four Knicks of in the history of basketball.


Patrick Ewing
There was a lot of great buzz surrounding the 7-footer from Georgetown University before he even stepped foot on an NBA court. Many knew Ewing would be the next star in the NBA, but the question was, what team would draft him? In the 1985 NBA Draft, the Knicks selected Ewing with number one overall pick. It was a move that would change the franchise forever. After being drafted, there was immediate pressure on Ewing to perform at a high level, but that did not faze him as he had a terrific first season and took home the Rookie of the Year Award. During his 15 year career, he helped guide the Knicks to two NBA Finals appearances and was elected to 11 NBA All-Star games. He is the leading scorer in Knicks history and after he retired the Knicks retired his famous jersey number,33, at Madison Square Garden in front of a sell-out crowd.

Walt Frazier
Frazier was arguably the best point guard to ever put on a Knicks uniform. He helped guide the Knicks to two NBA championships in 1970 and 1973. The crowning moment of his career as a Knick was in Game 7 of the 1970 NBA Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers. With an NBA title on the line, Frazier scored 36 points, dished out 19 assists and grabbed seven rebounds to help the Knicks capture their first NBA Championship in franchise history. Frazier was elected to seven All-Star games and still holds the Knicks record for most assists with 5, 040.

Willis Reed
Reed spent his entire ten year NBA career with the New York Knicks. After being drafted by the Knicks in 1964 he quickly made a name for himself as a fierce, dominating and physical force on both ends of the court. Throughout his decade-long tenure, he averaged a double-double in seven out of ten seasons. He was also known as one of the clutchest players in Knicks history. A highlight of Reed’s career came in Game 7 of the 1970 NBA Finals. Reed had multiple injuries that kept him out of Game 6 and was considered unlikely to give it a go in Game 7. However, Reed’s heart and dedication to the game showed as he surprised fans by limping through the tunnel and onto the court, prompting a standing ovation by Knicks fans. Once the game tipped off, he would score the Knick first two field goals on his first two shot attempts.

Allan Houston
Houston might be considered one of the most underrated men to ever put on the blue and orange jersey. He was one of best shooters the Knicks have ever had during his 11 seasons with the team. Houston was elected to two NBA All-Star teams and helped guide the Knicks to an NBA Finals Appearance in 1999. One of Houston’s best moments as a Knick came in Game 5 of the 1999 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals against the Miami Heat. With the Knicks trailing by one point and 4.5 seconds remaining,their season on the line. Houston hit a running jumper to knock off the number one seeded Miami Heat to advance to the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals. To this day, this is regarded as one best moments in Knicks history.

Click here to find out where the rest of the Knicks rank

Making Sense of the NBA Salary Cap

In the NBA, there are many ways to get creative and maximize the talent you put on a roster. The NBA has a salary cap but it is flexible. For example, the cap for this season is $70 million. Now, you don’t need to spend all of that. You, at minimum, need to spend $63 million. That $63 million represents the league minimum (90%) of the cap in which a team can spend. Should a team choose not to, (cough) the Philadelphia 76ers (cough), they’ll have to send a check to the NBA at season’s end for the and money

There are ways to however go over the salary cap. Let’s say you finish a season with a team payroll of $70 million, right at the cap. Now you have 2 players whose contracts are expiring and are looking to increase the amount they make on a yearly basis. Provided you contain their bird rights, you have the opportunity to bring them back and go over the salary cap. Teams that are under the cap are given a mid-level exception. This allows teams to sign a player for $5 million annually for 4 years and take them over the cap. Teams already over the cap are given a mini mid-level exception valued at 3 years and $3 million per year. Teams are also still allowed to draft players and sign them if already over the cap. Once over the cap, the only way to bring players onto the roster is through mid-level/mini mid-level, the draft, or signing players to the veteran’s minimum which is approximately $1.3 million.

There is a catch for going over. For every dollar over the salary cap, teams are penalized approximately three times the amount over. In 2013-2014, the Brooklyn Nets were all in having brought in Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Jason Terry to add to the expensive core of Deron Williams, Joe Johnson and Brook Lopez. With the salary cap that season set at approximately $71 million, the Nets had exceeded the cap with a team payroll just north of $100 million. That meant because they were over by about $30 million, they would have to pay the penalty. Some teams are willing to do this if one, ownership signs off on it, and 2, the front office believes this team has what it takes to win it all. The Nets luxury tax bill was somewhere around $80 million which ultimately meant that the Nets roster that year cost them $180+ million.

Next summer, the NBA salary cap is set to skyrocket due to a lucrative television deal. I have no doubt that all of this will become even more confusing than it already is. We’ll just have to wait and see what kind of new rules, regulations and restrictions the NBA can come up with.