5 Things To Watch For In New York Sports In 2016

Kristaps Porzingis of the Knicks

2015 had its shares of highs and lows for New York area sport teams. The highs were the New York Mets making it to the World Series for the first time in 15 years, and the Yankees making the playoffs when few expected them to. Some of the lows were the Knicks finishing the 2014-2015 season with the worst record in the history of the franchise, and the Giants finishing 6-10 for the second year in a row.

  1. Can the Mets make it back to the World Series?

The 2015 season was a great season for the New York Mets. They came out of nowhere to win the National League Pennant but lost in the World Series to the Kansas City Royals in five games. The Mets enter the 2016 season with the best starting pitching rotation in baseball with Jacob deGrom, Matt Harvey, Noah, Syndergaard, and Steven Matz.

Their starting pitching alone should get them into the playoffs. But if they’re going to win their first World Series since 1986, they’ll need to resign Yoenis Cespedes and add another pitcher or two to their bullpen.

 

  1. Can The Giants and Jets End Their Long Playoff Drought?

Many New Yorkers will tell you that New York is a football city. Unfortunately none of the local teams have given their fans much to cheer about for the last few seasons. The Giants missed the playoffs for the fourth year in a row which lead to Tom Coughlin resigning as head coach. The Giants promoted offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo as their new coach in hopes that he can lead the Giants to the playoffs for the first time since they won Super Bowl XLVI. If the Giants are going to make the playoffs, they will need to revamp their defense which finished last in the NFL.

The Jets fared better than most expected this season under new head coach Todd Bowles as they finished the season 10-6 which was their first winning season since 2010. But they lost the season finale to the Buffalo Bills which cost them a playoff berth. The Jets had one of the most talented rosters in the NFL but several key players such as quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, running back Chris Ivory, and defensive lineman Mohammad Wilkerson are free agents. It will be difficult to bring all three back but the Jets have a good young nucleus such as Leonard Williams and Marcus Williams that will keep the Jets competitive for years to come.

 

  1. Are The Knicks For Real?

When the Knicks drafted Kristaps Porzingis with the 4th pick in the draft, the selection was greeted with a chorus of boos. But it didn’t take long for Knicks fans to change their opinions of Porzingis as he as shown that he is the arguably the most talented player in the draft. With Carmelo Anthony back from knee surgery and the play of Arron Afflalo, fans believe this team could make the playoffs this year and could be a threat to win a championship in a few years. If Phil Jackson is able to add one or two more key players to go along with Melo and Porzingis, maybe this will end the Knicks championship drought.

 

  1. Can Chris Mullin Turn St John’s Into A Powerhouse Again?

A few decades ago St John’s basketball was as prestigious and elite as North Carolina, Kentucky and Duke. However, for about the past 15 years the program has struggled as they have been unable to land the top high school basketball players. In effort to make the St John’s basketball program to what it once was, they named one of their greatest players of all-time, Chris Mullin as the 20th head coach in the Universities’ history.

Mullin’s first season has seen its share of growing pains which is to be expected when you’re coaching a young team in your first year as a head coach. St John’s believes that sooner rather than later, Mullin will be able to land the top high school basketball players because he is a Hall of Famer that can mentor players on what it will take to make it to the next level. Don’t be surprised if St John has one of the top 10 recruiting classes in 2016.

 

  1. Will A Team Bring The City A Championship?

New York is all about winning and the city is craving for one of the local teams of the major sports to deliver a championship. Despite having more than one team in every major sport, no team has been able to deliver a championship since the Giants won Super Bowl XLVI in February 2012. Some franchises such as the Jets, Knicks, Nets, Mets, Islanders and Rangers have gone decades without winning a championship. The city is thirsty for another championship parade and hoping one of these teams’ delivers a championship.

Image courtesy of nypost.com

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