King James in The Garden?

How LeBron is giving his New York fans hope for 2010.

(Continued from Page 1)

"I've dreamed about playing well in this building," James admitted last season following his 50-point explosion. "To get a standing ovation in the greatest basketball arena in the world was a dream come true for me. It's one of the best things that ever happened to me."

Ah, that New York state of mind!

Last week, a segment of the overflow crowd donned T-shirts with the prayerful words: "LeBron James 2010: Change We Can Believe In."

James was not doing anything to tamp down expectations: "If you're a Knicks fan, you should keep an open mind," he said.

But he should, too. For every light on Broadway and all that. New York is a city of dreams that doubles as the headquarters of heartache. Ask Plax. Ask Starbury.

Glenn Minnis is a New York writer.