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Oh, Knicks, Not Again

The official start of NBA free agency caused quite a stir. Most notably, big-name free agents Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving committed to the Brooklyn Nets, leaving the New York Knicks without a star. We unpack this missed opportunity for the Knicks and what might define “the new NBA.”

In honor of the upcoming Fourth of July holiday, Geoff and Neil have a heated debate on the merits of competitive eating. Is it a sport? Is it the antithesis of sports? Has someone on the pod participated in a hot dog eating contest in the past?!

For our Rabbit Hole, we’re joined by FiveThirtyEight copy desk intern Santul Nerkar, who dug into oddities in tournament point allocation in the World Cup and beyond.

What we’re looking at this week:

  • Neil Greenberg for The Washington Post breaks down the financial implications of the Knicks’ actions during free agency.
  • Kawhi Leonard’s monumental decision from The Ringer.
  • Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July Hot Dog Eating Contest.
  • Research behind “excitingness” and awarding 3 points for a win in soccer.

Grace Lynch is the former producer of Hot Takedown.

Sara Ziegler is the former sports editor at FiveThirtyEight.

Neil Paine was the acting sports editor at FiveThirtyEight.

Geoff Foster is the former sports editor of FiveThirtyEight.

Santul Nerkar was a copy editor at FiveThirtyEight.