All the precious, fragile, bitterly-won gains of humankind's wretched, fitful, brave, millennia-long upward struggle went up in white-hot magnesium flames last night in Philadelphia and burned away to powder. All for nothing. All fantasies, every damn one. The Knicks and Sixers have shown us ourselves, and we are garbage.

Look at this god-damned shit:

This is it, friends. Shitbarf Guy, rendered as a basketball sequence. All the cowardice and ineptitude and bad faith of both of these organizations, manifested in 20 or so seconds of cortex-rotting slapstick horror. Look at Jose Calderon and Carmelo Anthony, flat-footed, dilatory, passive as the hoop stanchion; look at the Sixers, all those anonymous sad-sack Sixers, getting rejected at the rim again and again by nothing more than their own goddamn lousiness. Lean on in and get an eyeful of Melo, wide open on the break, somehow managing to hit the underside of the rim with a fucking three-pointer. Physics itself has turned its back on these teams.

This is the ultimate expression of the 2014-15 Knicks and Sixers: The motions and attitudes and gestures of basketball, of competition, producing (for those 20 seconds, between K.J. McDaniels's contested airball and the foul-call that stops play) nothing but embarrassment and failure engineered by the teams themselves. Measured by their own perverse goals, it's the most successful sequence of the entire season, for either organization. Look how convincingly they mimic the movements and grunts of basketball players, without covering a single inch in the direction of victory! Look how much game-time they winnow away, and how fruitlessly they do it! The front offices must have swelled with pride at the sight.

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The referee's whistle that ended this torture-porn atrocity was a wildly unearned act of mercy. By all rights, when last night's game ended, everyone in the Wells Fargo Center ought to have been loaded onto buses and taken directly to dark, quiet rooms where they could contemplate the horrors of the void.

The Knicks outscored the Sixers, 98-91. I don't even know what that means. Can a basketball game between two teams that want to lose be "won"? Is it a basketball game at all?