New York Knicks’ star Carmelo Anthony has always been one known to put numbers up, but the start ‘Melo has gotten off to so far this season is different.
Anthony is playing at an MVP-type level and has left no doubt that Knicks’ head coach Mike Woodson must leave him at the 4, whether Anthony wants to or not.
‘Melo is averaging 25.6 points per game and 6.6 rebounds through 12 games this season and his success has come with one common theme- NBA power forwards cannot guard him.
What’s funny about his success is that most of it is coming early in games. He’s averaging 10.5 points per first quarter (tops in NBA) and has set the tone for how the Knicks offense runs. When ‘Melo gets off to great starts, more attention gets paid to him, opening up the floor for the rest of his teammates.
Anthony can post-up or step out and hit the three with consistency. When he scores in double-figures in the fourth quarter, like he has done in six of the Knicks 12 games so far, the entire team feeds off it.
For Woodson it is as simple as if it isn’t broke don’t fix it.
Some of the Knicks 9-3 start can be attributed to quick starts. So far the Knicks have averaged 28.41 points in the first quarter and have outscored the opposition 341-285 during the game’s first 12 minutes. In addition, the Knicks have held a lead in 10 of 12 games after one quarter, only failing to do so against Memphis and Houston so far.
Many believe that once Amar’e Stoudemire returns to action that Anthony will move back to the 3.
Judging by the results so far, that is the wrong move.
Anthony has had too much success playing down low to move him now. Whether or not he wants to believe it, ’Melo is a power forward. Both he and Woodson need to realize that and keep him at the 4 for the long-term.
The hot starts that not only he, but the team have gotten off to is all the proof that Woodson should need.
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