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Knicks fans yell ‘traitor’ during national anthem in Kristaps Porzingis’ return

Kristaps Porzingis

The storyline that has loomed over the New York Knicks’ matchup with the Dallas Mavericks at Madison Square Garden is the return of Kristaps Porziņģis for the first time since being traded.

Given that Porziņģis asked to be traded by the Knicks, it’s expected that fans would voice their displeasure with him. That’s exactly what fans did between booing him every time he touched the ball during pre-game warmups. In fact, one fan even yelled ‘traitor’ during the singing of the national anthem, according to Ian Begley of SNY.tv.

The warm reception back to Madison Square Garden that Porziņģis received continued into the actual gameplay. There were loud “KP Sucks” chants whenever he touched the basketball and in basic situations like when he had his hands over his knees waiting for a teammate to shoot a free throw.

Not all Knicks fans are upset with Porziņģis given the disastrous state of their favorite franchise. The supporting cast that he had in New York was very underwhelming and the organization has appeared to be significantly dysfunctional for many years. Let’s not forget that they have the worst record of any NBA franchise over the last 20 seasons.

There is an additional layer to consider when analyzing Porziņģis’ departure from the Knicks. They truly believed that they were going to land Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving and were likely accommodating of the trade request because they needed to clear cap space to make those superstar additions financially possible.

Being convinced that landing two superstars is inevitable and ending up with players like Taj Gibson and Marcus Morris should vindicate Porziņģis for wanting out if he even needed it in the first place.