(Photo from Twitter: @nyknicks)
When you looked on the schedule, this Knick game against the New Orleans Pelicans was an interesting test. How would rookie sensation Kristaps Porzingis play against All-Star Anthony Davis? Would Carmelo Anthony be 100 percent with his rehabbing knee?
And would the Knicks win a game against a team they are supposed to beat?
However, in light of Friday’s events in Paris, you had to feel for center Kevin Seraphin. The only French Knick felt the tragedy more than anyone on his team and played the game with a heavy heart.
In fact, to honor his home, Serphin went to the barber this morning and had “Paris” in shape of the Knick logo shaved into his head.
“I just wanted to do something creative, something different – not just put on my shoes” he said. “I had no time to get a tattoo or anything, so I wanted to be creative.”
He said, he was a little misty when the Knicks played the French National Anthem, before the game and for good reason; his parents live over in Paris.
“Just crazy over there,” he said. “There’s nobody out on the street. It’s hard because it can happen anywhere. You just have to fight through it. That’s how you have to be at one point. I also play for the Knicks and have to be professional.”
Seraphin was ready to play to say the least. Coach Derek Fisher used him for important minutes down the stretch – scoring 12 points in a little over 14 minutes – during the 95-87 win over the Pelicans.
“He’s been working hard to keep himself in shape event though he hasn’t played a lot of minutes. We felt like he was active enough and energetic enough to give us a punch,” Fisher said. “We know what he can do offensively, but it was good to see the defensive rebounding.”
Seraphin may be a missing piece for the Knicks. With Robin Lopez somewhat ineffective in the first half, it was good for Fisher to see that kind of depth on the team. A player like Seraphin will help fill in, and it’s important for the Knicks to have that depth on the bench.
“I think it says a lot,” Fisher said. “We’ve had a number of guys so far in these first 10 or 11 games that have been put in that position. I think they have come in and done a really good job.”
And with that the Knicks are building a team. They had a tough schedule for the first few weeks and now it will get somewhat easier. Anthony looks like his knee is better as he scored 29, while Porzingis looks like a player. He went up against Davis, and didn’t have his best game, but it was a learning experience for the rookie.Porzingis will have many more in the coming months, but it’s safe to say, the Knicks are real, and Fisher is building a team.
Hopefully this is the start of something big for the club. Yet, in the future, you hope that they don’t have to play with heavy hearts like today.