Long-suffering Knicks fans ride superstitions into NBA playoffs

On Sunday, 13-year-old Cassidy Berger will head to Madison Square Garden for Day 2 of the NBA playoffs carrying his Immanuel Quickley jersey — and he has no plans to take it off for some time.

“I will wear  it the rest of the playoff run,” Cassidy advised The Post of the shirt, which his father, Ryan, purchased when the Knicks performed the Atlanta Hawks — the identical staff they’re up against on Sunday. “I got it during the game when they beat the Hawks and started a seven-game winning streak.”

It’s not his solely superstition.

His household’s Short Hills, NJ, basement is tricked out with 5 side-by-side TV screens for viewing sports activities — however he and his sisters can solely watching the Knicks on the biggest, which measures 85 inches. “If we are watching from home, we have to have them on the big screen. No matter what,” Cassidy mentioned. “I do it for good luck so they win. They are so good this year, and fun to watch.”

The Knicks are making their first playoff look since 2013, giving the long-suffering fanbase a way of one thing unfamiliar: hope. It’s sufficient to make lots of them flip to rituals, superstitions and good-luck charms to maintain the Knickerbocker mojo flowing.

Jamil Thomas is doing his half to prop up the staff’s fortune by by no means repeating what he wears to video games — which isn’t simple because the season ticket holder hits about 50 a 12 months, each at MSG and on the street.

“Even though the Knicks sucked for years, I thought if I wore the same thing it would be bad luck,” Thomas, 36, advised The Post.

The Bronx native has a stockpile of classic Knicks gear, a few of which he was handed down from his father, who lastly gave up on the franchise when Charles Oakley was banned from MSG in 2017 following an altercation with staff proprietor Jim Dolan. Each week, Thomas goes to his storage unit, which homes greater than 50 totally different pairs of Patrick Ewing Adidas, and plans his seems.

“It can get a little pricey, but you have to up the ante,” mentioned Thomas, who works for a non-profit.

His search for Sunday? “It’s going to be a straight Ewing jersey and a hat. I hope it brings us luck.”

Anthony Donohue wearing a bracelet in honor of his sister, Gianna, who passed away in August.
Anthony Donohue wears a bracelet to each recreation in honor of his sister, Gianna, who handed away in August.
Handout photograph

Known superfan Anthony Donohue, 37, hasn’t wavered from his routine, both: “I go two hours early before every game.”

He used to attend with  his sister Gianna Gregoire, however in August she  handed away from glioblastoma. In her honor, the Bronx native and season ticket holder at all times wears a bracelet emblazoned with the phrase “#winforGianna.”

“I would freak out if I didn’t have the bracelet on,” mentioned Donohue, who thinks his late sibling may need one thing to do with the staff’s success.

“The Knicks have been horrible, and all of a sudden we’re one of the top teams in the East,” he mentioned. “One of my friends sent me a text that said, ‘I swear G is on some “Angels in the Outfield” sort s–t.’”

Upper East Sider John Broder’s good-luck totem is as uncomfortable as being a lifelong Knicks fan: a mane that stretches to the center of his again. The 46-year-old recurrently grows out his hair to chop and donate to charity. He deliberate to cut it after the basketball season — however the Knicks stored successful, so he stored rising.

John Bruder
John Bruder is rising his hair out so long as the Knicks keep within the race. He additionally received’t change his canine’s leash till they lose.
Deb Novick

“This week it has gotten so hot,” Broder, who has tickets for the sequence, advised The Post. “I can’t eat unless I put my hair up. I have friends who would freak out if I showed up [to a game] with it cut.”

If the Knicks defy the percentages and win all of it, Broder is dedicated to protecting the sweaty mane via July. “I am ready,” he mentioned. “I would sacrifice that because it would be well worth it to have a parade downtown.”

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