The most significant one is the 1990 game which led to a rule known as the Trent Tucker rule. That was when Tucker hit a three-pointer with one-tenth of a second remaining. It was the first year the NBA employed tenths of a second in the game clock and eventually required there to be at least three-tenths of a second remaining before such a shot can be hit. The only time a game-winner occurred with under three-tenths of a second left was December 2006 when David Lee deflected his own inbounds pass.
Thanks to the archives of the NY Times, we can relive that with Tucker's comments:
'It's the greatest shot I ever made,'' Tucker said. ''I just caught the ball and flung it. When the ball left my hands, I knew it was on target. What I didn't know was whether it had the distance. When it went in, I thought to myself, 'not bad for a guy who was supposed to be a decoy on the play.' ''
Three years later, the schedule-makers rewarded us diehards with a potential NBA finals matchup when the revamped Phoenix Suns visited. I was in the stands for that game, a 106-103 Knick win. The most memorable moment was afterwards when Charles Barkley chased after referee Jim Clark over a non-call. I didn't recall it now, but apparently the incident was escalated when Clark told Barkley that his outburst would cost him money.
"When he said the part to me about money, I went off. Like he can control me with money. You can't control people with money. I thought he made bad calls all night, but when he said that thing about, 'It's going to cost you money,' like money can control me? Give me a break."
The call or non-call that ticked off Barkley was on the final play. Needing a three to tie, Anthony Mason tightly contested the shot, which was an airball.
Other games have been routine wins or losses, including a 16-point win over the Celtics in 1998 that was the Knicks 21st consecutive win in the series. Two years later represented Patrick Ewing's final appearance on this day as a Knick. He scored14 points in 29 minutes in a 105-94 victory over the Pistons. At that time, Grant Hill and Jerry Stackhouse represented one the NBA's higher-scoring tandems but they were a combined 10-of-35 from the field.
And the last time the Knicks had a winning record on this day was 2001 against the Spurs. It was a blowout win that became memorable when Jeff Van Gundy was clocked by Marcus Camby, who intended to punch Danny Ferry.
Since then, the Knicks have been a losing team in their long struggle to try and reclaim what they once knew. They've had a few good games on this day (07 vs. Sacramento), one heart-breaker (Ben Gordon in 2005 for the Bulls) and one complete embarrassment (02 vs. the Hornets).