At this time last season, the Knicks would have surely collapsed and lost to the Grizzlies last night after relinquishing a 17-point lead.
What's obviously changed this season is that the Knicks have paired resident star Amar'e Stoudemire up with New York's own Carmelo Anthony.
While the Knicks may have been criticized for "giving up the farm" for Anthony, his star power and clutch performances make him just that valuable. This year's Knicks, just like the Knicks of old, still gave up that large lead...but last night was different as the Knicks now have two of the game's most best players to stop the ultimate collapse from happening.
As Knicks broadcaster Clyde Frazier put it, "Let's see if the superstars can earn their money tonight!"
And that's exactly what Anthony did, knocking down a jump shot with half a second left on the clock to keep his team from losing a heartbreaker, instead, winning 110-108.
Because of his heroics, the talks of last night's contest are not that the Knicks gave up such a lead (which should be unacceptable in itself, but that expectation is sure to come soon enough), but that they were able to hold on for the win.
This is what a winner does; whether you refer to Anthony, or the Knicks as a whole in this regard, a winner never lets up. It's not always about having the best offense or defense, because clearly, the Grizzlies (who have a better record than the Knicks) were able to keep their heads above water and make it back in the game.
The Knicks proved to be relentless, even through their late fourth quarter struggles, and that's what becoming a winner and legitimate contender will ultimately be about as the team continues to improve.