New York Knicks: Kristaps Porzingis Is Feeling The Heat Of Being A Leader This Season [Opinion]

Jonathan BachmanAP Images

Why do these things keep happening to the New York Knicks? With Phil Jackson and Carmelo Anthony gone, this was to be the official end of their drama. However, things just keep getting worse for this team. Injuries have taken its toll and the constant trade rumors have not helped either. But now, their star player, Kristaps Porzingis, according to NBC Sports, has gone on record as saying “I’m so tired right now” while referencing his play as of late.

Was Porzingis wrong in stating the truth? No, but he was wrong for admitting to others outside of his locker room. Porzingis must have forgotten that he’s dealing with the New York media. Madison Square Garden was home to one of the toughest NBA teams ever. Can you imagine Patrick Ewing or Charles Oakley ever going on record as saying how tired they were? Porzingis is the official face of the New York Knicks and their lone star, and at no point should he ever make excuses for poor play like he did.

In all fairness, we understand Porzingis. It’s hard playing back-to-back games, travel from city to city, different time zones, plus running up and down a court for 35+ minutes. But isn’t this what he wanted? Did he not watch Anthony go through this for two years? What did he expect? It’s not easy being a leader of a team that’s not winning. As he said that he wants to elevate his game and do the same for his teammates but he should choose his words more carefully from now on.

The physical aspect of the game is tough but so is the mental part.

Friday morning, Porzingis tried to recant his comment by saying he was playing and wanted to throw off the Miami Heat before Friday’s game. Sorry, Porzingis but no one is buying that lame excuse. The truth is, you’re not ready to take on the role that Carmelo left. It was cool to play second-fiddle for two seasons but playing Robin and now Batman is two totally different roles.

Porzingis is young and his comments do reflect that, however, he must now go out and prove that he’s the leader of this New York Knicks team. He put his foot in his mouth and the only way to take it out is for him to put the team on his back and lead them back to relevance. Is it unfair to this young kid? No, for the simple fact, this is what he’s paid to do and the role he accepted.

Last season, while still under the wing of Anthony, he may have gotten away with a comment like that but not this year. How many times did Russell Westbrook or James Harden play the tired card? Every player may think it to themselves but to admit it to the media was the wrong thing to do. Porzingis has a bright future ahead of him in the NBA but if he keeps wearing his heart on his sleeve in this city, he won’t last long.