The Knicks clinched the Atlantic Division with a win over the Wizards on Tuesday night, and it was great for a number of reasons. Because this Knicks team has been way too much fun all year, because Carmelo is playing out of his mind right now, and most of all, because the Knicks have some of the best fans in basketball, and it's been a LONG TIME since they could root for a team that's a division champion. How long, exactly?
Glad you asked!
The last time the Knicks won a division title was 1994. I was seven years old, Pat Riley was stalking the sidelines in his Armani suits, Michael Jordan was playing baseball, and the Knicks were really, truly championship contenders. It was a very different time.
A better time? Perhaps. You be the judge. Let's all take a trip back to 1994 together.
This was the cover of Time Magazine in 1994.
Hulk Hogan left WWF for WCW. Over the ensuing 19 years, Hogan would go on to fame and fortune and eventually a sextape with Bubba The Love Sponge.
Green Day released Dookie.
Biggie released Ready To Die.
Tonya Harding's ex-husband attacked Nancy Kerrigan. From the New York Times:
According to Mr. Eckardt's account in the affidavit, "in furtherance of the scheme to injure Miss Kerrigan," Mr. Gillooly said that Miss Harding had twice telephoned a skating rink on Cape Cod, where the attack was initially intended, to learn when Miss Kerrigan was practicing. Telephone company records show four calls from the Gillooly-Harding residence to the Tony Kent Arena in South Dennis, Mass., where Miss Kerrigan practiced, the affidavit said. Calls Reported to Rink
A woman who identified herself as a manager at the rink but would not give her name said that some employees had received telephone calls from a woman asking when Miss Kerrigan would practice during the time in question, but, she said, "We have no idea who they came from."
Mr. Gillooly added, according to the Eckardt account, that Miss Harding was so concerned about the calls that she said that if she were ever asked about them, she would say she was trying to get Miss Kerrigan to sign a poster.
Even 19 years later: HOLY SHIT!
Shaq was rapping in Reebok commercials. Yup.
Jalen Rose was wearing the best suit in NBA Draft history. YUP.
Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes burned down Andre Rison's house. From a People Magazine feature called "In The Heat of the Night":
ATLANTA FALCONS STAR ANDRE RISON still appears in shock as he sits at the edge of a deserted football field in Suwanee, Ga. Just now, says Rison, the only way he could imagine finding any peace would be by going out to the 50-yard line, lying down and wailing for the night. "Then when it gets real quiet," he says, "I think I'd be able to hear her voice. I still love her, you know."
It is hard to believe, but the voice Rison, 27, longs to hear belongs to his girlfriend, Lisa Lopes, 23, a singer with the hot hip-hop group TLC, who just four days earlier had shown Rison anything but tender loving care. In the early hours of June 9, after they had fought and Andre walked out, Lopes allegedly put a match to cardboard in the upstairs whirlpool bath of Rison's million-dollar Atlanta mansion, destroying it, along with just about everything Andre owned. Then for good measure, she reportedly smashed his Toyota truck and two Mercedes-Benz cars.
Poor Andre Rison.
February 19th, 1994. Via Wikipedia: "In an opening monologue on Saturday Night Live, guest host Martin Lawrence makes sexually explicit jokes about female genitalia and feminine hygiene, which results in NBC banning him from appearing on the network (for the next year) and SNL (for life)." ... Did you know Martin Lawrence was banned from Saturday Night Live for life? Now you do!
Amazon.com was founded. And none of us got rich.
Vancouver nearly burned to ground because of hockey.
Dream Team II happened. Never forget that Derrick Coleman played for Team USA once.
Deion Sanders made the 49ers unstoppable. He left Atlanta to sign with San Francisco, going from the Braves and Falcons to the Giants and 49ers. He would go on to win a Super Bowl with San Fran in January 1995. He also did this when he returned home to play the Falcons. Poor Andre Rison.
John Kruk was a famous professional athlete. Sup, ladies.
WOODSTOCK '94. Woodstock '94 was a real thing, but not as great as Woodstock '99 when Fred Durst and Limp Bizkit started a riot with "Break Stuff". The Knicks did not win the Atlantic Division that year, though, so we're not talking about 1999.
World Cup '94 comes to America. Shoutout to Roberto Baggio and/or Super Nintendo.
Whitney Houston performs at the World Cup. Got that UPS swag.
Tommie Frazier was Football God for Nebraska. Jorts game = SO on point.
NOTE: This photo was actually taken in 1995, but Tommie Frazier--and those jean shorts, and that Apex windbreaker--needed to be included here.
Bill Clinton and the best Sports Illustrated cover ever. PIG SOOEY.
This Sports Illustrated cover doesn't hold up as well. Better days for the NHL.
Barney makes his first appearance on NBC. Much to the delight of a 5 year-old Kevin Durant.
The Lion King hits theaters. 5 year-old Kevin Durant completely loses his shit when Mufasa dies.
Baseball goes on strike. The Expos were in first place that year and would never be the same, this kid never loved baseball again, and we all learned that sometimes life is unfair.
5 year-old Kevin Durant didn't really give a shit, to be honest.
Forest Gump and Pulp Fiction hit theaters. Other important film achievements from 1994 include: The Shawshank Redemption, The River Wild, True Lies, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Reality Bites, OPCU, Richie Rich, Speed, Timecop, The Scout, starring Brendon Fraser and Albert Brooks, and On Deadly Ground, an environmental thriller where Steven Seagal plays Forrest Taft, an ex-CIA agent he goes to war with an oil company in Alaska to protect the rights of the local eskimo population.
And finally, let's all just rock out to some jams from 1994.
R Kelly -- "Bump and Grind"
Biggie and Craig Mack -- "Let Me Get Down"
The Cranberries -- "Dreams"
Hootie and the Blowfish -- "Hold My Hand"
Coolio -- "Fantastic Voyage"
Gloria Estefan -- "Turn The Beat Around"
Tom Petty -- "Mary Jane's Last Dance"
Outkast -- "Players Ball"
The Beastie Boys -- "Sabotage" (Live at the 1994 MTV Video Music Awards)
Bryan Adams, Rod Stewart, & Sting -- "All for Love"
Snoop Dogg -- "Gin and Juice"
Real McCoy -- "Another Night"
The Cranberries -- "Zombie"
Why did we only choose to embed the Cranberries songs? Because The Cranberries are awesome, and the whole world needs to recognize. F--k the haters.
In conclusion: Congratulations to the Knicks, first because they've given us an opportunity to remember 1994, and also because they've been totally awesome all year long.
As awesome as 1994? Maybe not.
But could anything ever be as awesome as 1994?
The Enforcer of Justice has your answer right here.