The New York Knicks, lovingly called the Knicks by their fans, are a powerful NBA team to be reckoned with. Starting out in the 1940s, the franchise had a lot of ups and downs, but it always had a loyal fan base and following. Whether you’re a big Knicks fan or you’re curious to learn about the team, you’ve come to the right place! Here’s everything you need to know about the greatest New York Knicks players of all time, conveniently ranked below. Read on to see the best of the best in ascending order when it comes to the Knicks!
Kicking off the list of the best Knicks players of all time is a current player Julius Randle. While it is unusual to see a current player this high in the ranks, Julius Randle is no ordinary player. While he’s only been playing since 2019, Randle has made quite the name for himself and is already achieving more than most Knicks players. If you’re not convinced why this man deserves a spot on the list, you can buy Knicks playoff tickets and see for yourself! With his sole All-Star appearance and Most-Improved Player Award, his name was cemented in the NBA hall of fame.
The next player on the list goes back a bit, as most of the best Knicks players do, and is an icon in NBA history. Bill Bradley, played for the Knicks in the ’70s and was a valuable player during his runs in 1970 and 1973. After a decade with the Knicks, Bradley made one All-Star appearance before the rosters expanded and he had to retire his jersey. Even though he left the sport to pursue a career in politics, Bradley still remains a beloved player. The Knicks wouldn’t have been the same for a lot of fans without Bill Bradley.
Next on the list is a popular player from the early 2000s, who amassed quite the fan base and track record. Allan Houston came over to the Knicks in the early 2000s from the Detroit Pistons and made a name for himself there. His scoring ability and outside shooting helped him become the star player of the franchise after the era of Patrick Ewing ended (we’ll get to him later!). Allan Houston had two All-Star appearances and was the main player to lead the team during a few postseason runs. Houston was the face of the Knicks in 1999, and led them to the NBA Finals that year, cementing his All-Star status!
The next All-Star player on the list is none other than Earl “The Pearl” Monroe. Earl Monroe had many nicknames to accompany his rise to success from “The Pearl” to “Black Jesus” to “Thomas Edison”. This NBA icon was more than a cool nickname and the Knicks owe a lot of their success as a franchise to him. While Monroe had a few ups and downs throughout his time at the Knicks, he was a valuable and fan-favorite player. Thanks to Monroe, the Knicks were able to win the 1973 NBA Championship and take home the trophy!
It’s hard to acknowledge the Knicks and their success without talking about Willis Reed. Willis Reed was the main and best player in arguably the greatest moment in the history of the New York Knicks. After an injury in 1970, he returned and played with even more passion and fire than ever before, leading the team to victory in the NBA Championship. Reed was the NBA Finals MVP in both 1970 and 1973 when the Knicks won their titles. Adored by the fans, Reed remains the only player to ever win a regular season MVP or Finals MVP as a member of the Knicks.
Last but not least, the final name on this list marks the best New York Knicks player of all time: Patrick Ewing. Anyone who knows anything about the Knicks or basketball can attest to this man and his success. Patrick Ewing joined the franchise in 1985 and led them to relevance and victory rather quickly. Before Ewing, the Knicks had been a contender for the title for many years and were finally able to achieve it with him. Ewing made a grand total of eleven All-Star appearances and was always the top player in every league. The only thing holding back Patrick Ewing from winning a title was that he played in the same era as Michael Jordan and Hakeem Olajuwon.
So there you have it! With this comprehensive list in mind, you’re all caught up on the best of the best of the New York Knicks! From Randle to Bradley to Houston, Reed, and finally Ewing, the Knicks have never had a shortage of fantastic players. Whether you watched them in the ‘90 or are still keeping up with them today, the Knicks are a worthy NBA team with a lot to offer!