A theory hashed by ESPN.com writer Bill Simmons and his friend Dave Cirilli. It that explains the reason why teams inexplicably become better after their star player leaves the team for any reason (trade, injury, etc.). Two elements must be present for a situation to be explained by the Ewing Theory: 1) The team has a star player who receives a lot of attention but never wins anything, and 2) The star player leaves the team and everybody writes the team off.
The Knicks lose Patrick Ewing to an injury in a 1999 NBA playoff series with the Indiana Pacers. Everyone writes them off. The Knicks then win three of the next four games and win the series to advance to the NBA finals.