Knicks Put Final Nail in Playoff Coffin

Loss to Jazz ensures Jazz of a lottery pick

There's something awfully fitting about the fact that the Jazz were the team to officially eliminate the Knicks from playoff contention on Monday night. With the win, the Jazz ensured that they'd be getting a lottery draft pick even as their own season will continue with a high seed in the Western Conference playoffs.

It's also awfully fitting that the latest Knicks loss came on the first night of Passover since the Knicks are look for their own deliverance from pain and suffering when this season comes to an end. While there's not much point comparing the sufferings of a professional basketball team with that of biblical slaves, it does feel like a lot more than 10 plagues have bedeviled the Knicks over this last decade.

Even if the Knicks do find the seas parting for the them this summer, one still wonders if they're going to continue wandering through the desert for a while longer. It's been 37 years since the last title, which means they are still three years shy of the standard set in Exodus and hearing Carlos Boozer lavishing praise on Mike D'Antoni after Monday's game was a reminder that there's no guarantee of superstars (or manna) flooding the Knicks locker room.

Boozer is a nice enough player, so is Joe Johnson and so are plenty of others that aren't stars of their own national ad campaigns. Nice will get you back to the playoffs, hardly an insignificant step, but no one is going to be building a golden idol to Boozer as a result of him leading the Knicks to a championship. Is leading the Knicks out of losing but not to a championship enough?

We'll sort all that out soon enough, but the Knicks are making one last push to appease the basketball gods in advance of their big moment. Eddy Curry's latest farce, er, comeback attempt was put to an end thanks to a calf injury that neither surprises nor saddens a single person. The sacrifice of Curry's fatted calf is as good a place to end this tale of woe as any other, for there is precious little else to say about the current Knicks.

It's offically all about next year in the Garden when all men can find hope once more.

Josh Alper is a writer living in New York City and is a contributor to FanHouse.com and ProFootballTalk.com in addition to his duties for NBCNewYork.com.

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