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The New York Knickerbockers, prominently known as the Knicks, are a professional basketball team based in New York City. They are part of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference in the National Basketball Association (NBA). The organization was a founding member of the Basketball Association of America in 1946 and joined the NBA after the BAA and National Basketball League merged.
The Knicks are one of only two teams of the original National Basketball Association still located in its original city (the other being the Boston Celtics). The "Knickerbocker" name comes from the pseudonym used by Washington Irving for his A History of New York, which name became applied to the descendants of the original Dutch settlers of what later became New York, and later, by extension, to New Yorkers in general.
The Knicks were successful during their early years and were constant playoff contenders. Beginning in 1950, the Knicks made three consecutive appearances the NBA Finals, all of which were losing efforts. Subsequently, the team began to falter and it was not until the late sixties when Red Holzman became head coach did the Knicks begin to regain their former dominance. Holzman successfully guided the Knicks to two championships in 1970 and 1973.
Though a consistent playoff contender afterwards, New York struggled to recapture their former success. In the past decade the Knicks have only made the playoffs twice most recently losing to the Boston Celtics in the first round of contention under the lead of Amar'e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony.