Ghosts in the Knicks Machine

Thunder roll after frightful night

By Josh Alper
|  Tuesday, Jan 12, 2010  |  Updated 9:30 AM EDT
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Ghosts in the Knicks Machine

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Chris Duhon: Who ya gonna call?

It didn't take long to notice that something was off about the Knicks during their game in Oklahoma City on Monday night.

They looked a lot like the team that lost nine of their first 10 games, a rare happenstance over the last six weeks of respectable basketball from Mike D'Antoni's bunch. Credit the deep, talented Thunder if you like, but you might find a more supernatural reason to your liking.

The Knicks spent the night at the Skirvin Hilton in Oklahoma city, a hotel that's gained a reputation for being haunted (and for having a GREAT continental breakfast too, but mostly the haunted thing).

It seems that the hotel's original owner had an affair with a maid that led to a pregnancy. To avoid scandal, the maid was locked on the top floor where she went crazy, gave birth and then jumped out a window killing herself and the baby. Since then, guests have reported hearing a wailing infant, seeing naked female ghosts and one man claims he was sexually assaulted by an apparition.

Thankfully, no Knick was violated -- but they were frightened.

Center Eddy Curry told Frank Isola of the Daily News that he only slept two hours, but that actualy didn't affect the game since Curry and Isola played the same amount of minutes.

Forward Jared Jeffries also said the hotel was "scary," and you figure that other players were a little too proud to admit they were spooked by creaking floorboards and what have you. 

A haunted hotel would also fill in some of the blanks about why the Thunder have gone from last year's laughingstock to the middle of the playoff hunt this year. Forward Kevin Durant and a roster studded with future stars is a good base, but it never hurts to make sure that your opponents have trouble sleeping the night before games. 

That's not fair to the Thunder, who would be a likable team if it weren't for the fact that they should be playing in Seattle. The majority of their rotation was born after Patrick Ewing's NBA career was thriving, which is interesting only in that it serves as a reminder of how the Knicks should have rebuilt their team with youth instead of trading the center and playing musical chairs with overpriced veterans. You wind up with Durant that way and that means you don't have to hope that LeBron James chooses you.

It's on to Philadelphia now for the Knicks where the only scary thing is what the papers are saying about Donovan McNabb and Andy Reid in the wake of the Eagles' loss to the Cowboys.

Assuming no one gets indigestion from a cheesesteak, the Knicks should get back on track in the City of Brotherly Love.

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