Deron Williams and other players kind of played off the idea of the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets rivalry during last season, and many experts and fans would agree. I heard many instances where a fan, or a writer would state that in order to have a rivalry there needs to be a history of tough games, and utter dislike for the other team and or players. These types of heated feelings generally build up over a playoff series, and that may be what’s needed in order for these two clubs to share a true rivalry.
Sure, the Knicks and Nets now share the same city, but New York is hardly a small area, and Brooklyn and Manhattan might as well be two different worlds. Many New Yorkers consider the Nets an invasive species in their city, and still refer to them as the New Jersey Nets. This is all understandable. The Clippers and Lakers not only share a city, but they share an arena, and NOBODY is calling what they have a rivalry. In both cases you have a divisional foe, or rival, but it’s not the same as the Celtics/Lakers back in the 1980′s, or the Pistons/Bulls of the late 80′s, early 90′s.
“When the reporters are asking us, ‘Is it a big deal?’, I think we all kind of shrug it off,” Deron said.
“Even when we won or when the Knicks won, the way they celebrated wasn’t how you would celebrate after a normal win. It definitely means much more. It’s not really a rivalry yet, but I think it’s forming, and as we get better and as the Knicks get better, I think it’ll be a rivalry for years to come.”
Many speculate over whether or not the arrival of Jason Kidd as the Brooklyn Nets new head coach will help push the envelope a little bit on the growth of this “rivalry”. Kidd played a good chunk of his NBA career with the Nets in New Jersey, but finished his career as a New York Knick. Kidd literally retired as a Knick, and then was hired as the Nets’ new head coach in the same month. Could something like this push this beef between burrows over the edge? Maybe, but as I said up top, the Knicks and Nets will need games, and likely tough playoff ones, to push create what the NBA world would consider to be a true rivalry.