After months of speculation, wild conspiracy theories, and above all else, losing basketball games, the day is upon the New York Knicks. Tomorrow, May 14th, 8:30 ET on ESPN, the ping pong balls will be randomly selected. The team that has the number one spot will be granted the right to choose whichever prospect they would like. However, in this draft, it’s Duke’s Zion Williamson.
This particular lottery, though, has special significance for our beloved Knicks. Not only is it the culmination of a 17-65 record, but it is also the lottery in which the New York Knicks will send former star center Patrick Ewing to the sit at the podium? Or is it an awkwardly small classroom desk? The table with the Knicks logo?
Ewing was the first overall pick in the 1985 draft, the year in which the lottery system was first implemented. The year when the Knicks had a 14.29% chance to win. This year New York has a 14.0% chance at number one, tied for the best odds in the league. However, because the lottery rules are utterly farcical, the team also has a roughly 47.9% chance to pick fifth overall.
Now that the math tutorial is over, I want to offer a guide for how to spend the biggest day in franchise history. Keep in mind karma. The basketball gods played a big role in this article. Anything I suggest either abides by the laws of both, or is an attempt to sway either entity in our favor. Have a day, Knicks fans. After 36 years, you have earned it.
Endlessly Run “Tankathon” Simulations
Before I explain more, a disclaimer: this activity may give you false hope, and it may bring you immense pain. However, it is so darn addicting.
The chances you have not heard of “Tankathon” are likely slim to none as a Knicks fan. It is the ex-girlfriend that you keep going back to, even though you know you shouldn’t. Over at Tankathon, they allow you to simulate the 2019 NBA draft lottery to your heart’s content, among other things. It’s an awesome idea, and it helps give tanking teams some hope that maybe all these losses will be beneficial in the long run.
If you have been following along this season, you have likely spent quite a bit of time on Tankathon. Even still, I felt obliged to include it as an activity to do when you are at work and on a computer or a phone. Our minds are racing with thoughts about tonight’s lottery.
As I mentioned before, this can cause immense stress, particularly every time you hit that orange button, and the L.A. Lakers or Dallas Mavericks logo pops into the number one slot. But this exercise can prepare you for the worst, as the Knicks don’t get the first pick often. Preparing for the worst is a GOOD thing, not bad. I was prepared for the worst just two weeks ago on NFL draft night. My team, Giants, selected Daniel Jones at six overall, it helped ease the pain.
Watch Zion Williamson Highlights
I would highly recommend this option, even if it is likely to inspire false hope. Williamson averaged 22 points and 10 rebounds while tearing up the college basketball nation. He is one of the biggest reasons this day is so important for the Knicks franchise. He’s a generational prospect, and likely the best since Anthony Davis came out of Kentucky.
I have taken the liberty of creating a playlist for anyone interested in the jaw-dropping dunks and blocks. It’s ten videos, not too long, but not too short, and it is a mix of Williamson dominating Class AA basketball in South Carolina. Also have some college highlights from his career sprinkled in. Enjoy.
Listen to (New) Music
Folks, this one is only, and I mean ONLY for karma purposes. Because when I say music, I don’t just mean any music. I mean everyone’s favorite blues/alternative/rock band. That’s right, I’m talking about JD & The Straight Shot. The band responsible for perhaps the most repetitive songs of all time.
I’d know because in preparation for this article, I listened to about ten of their songs. They’re not just not good, they’re hilariously bad. But perhaps the collective fanbase listening to some Dolan jams will trigger some sort of seismic shift in the basketball universe, so that the Knicks logo is the one that is in the first slot come Tuesday night.
I should’ve known not to listen to these songs, but I’m a desperate Knicks fan, what can I say? If you are familiar with Dolan’s band, you would recognize my allusion to his song, “I Should’ve Known,” which goes a little something like this:
I should’ve known
I should’ve known
I should’ve known
I should’ve thrown
Myself across his tracks
Stopped him from these vile attacks
I should’ve known
Yes, those are actual lyrics, and yes, every single song is just like that.
This particular song is Dolan’s apology for his relationship with Harvey Weinstein, and it could not possibly be any more disrespectful and inconsiderate. However, if you need some musical options for the biggest day in Knicks history, why not throw on JD and the Straight Shot? What’s the worst that could happen?
Go Play Some Basketball
I would strongly recommend this option, especially in between getting off work and the start of the lottery. Go outside, go to the YMCA, heck, even turn on NBA 2K if you have to. Pretend you’re Zion Williamson, or Ja Morant, or any of one of the premier prospects in this year’s draft (a short list, unfortunately).
I don’t care what age you are, we all love basketball, and we all want to be like Zion at some level. Whether you’re a teenager, like me, or an old man or woman, you can ball one last time before the future of the Knicks changes drastically.
Perhaps you can take inspiration from the guy below, who impersonated Williamson himself. Or, if you prefer, you can pretend Zion is in the Garden, throwing down earth-shattering dunks and sending opposing shot attempts into the fifth row. A kid can dream.
Attend the New York Knicks Fan Lottery Party
After this day, your eyes will be hurting from seeing other teams in the number one slot on Tankathon. Your legs will be sore from trying to jump like Zion, and trust me, your ears will undoubtedly be bleeding from listening to JD and the Straight Shot.
So what better way to relax while watching one of the biggest moments in franchise history than by hanging out with fellow Knicks lifers? J.B. and Jon from Knicks Film School, along with the guys from Poasting and Toasting, Gotham Sports Knicks, and Knicks Fan TV are hosting a lottery party at 7:30 P.M. ET.
10% of drink sales go to charity, and they are raffling off Knicks merchandise. If you know those guys, you know it’s going to be a great time. And while I can’t make it (I’m five years away from drinking and I live fifteen hours away), I definitely want as many Knicks fans to be in one place as possible, if only for karma’s sake.
Here’s the information for the lottery party…
Whether Knicks win or lose, we’re going to make sure someone walks away a winner
We’ll be raffling off Knicks merch and Slattery’s Midtown has agreed to donate 10% of drink sales to charity
⏰ 7:30 | May 14
— Knicks Film School (@KnickFilmSchool) May 1, 2019
While this was made (mostly) in jest, May 14th is truly the biggest day for our beloved Knicks. We must do whatever we can to make sure the ping pong ball with the NYK logo comes out in the first spot on Tuesday night. Even if that means enduring James Dolan’s god-awful band, then so be it.
To Knicks fans everywhere, I leave you with this:
Good luck to everyone, and may the odds be ever in our favor.