Anthony has also made some defensive strides during his time in New York. Perhaps most reflective of his increased effort and awareness on defense is the Knicks’ 105.8 defensive rating with ‘Melo on the floor (not a great number) falling to 108.2 with him off the floor. Not even Tyson Chandler’s absence meant so much to the Knicks’ defense; the only player with a steeper drop-off was Iman Shumpert.
Anthony won’t blow anyone away with his defense, but he’s certainly become a stable, mostly reliable defender in recent seasons. According to Synergy, Anthony only allowed .64 points per possession and 28.6% FG while guarding isolations — 33rd best in the league. Even more impressive, Synergy ranks him 11th in the NBA in guarding post-ups where he allowed just .59 ppp and 36.4% FG.
Of course, another positive facet of Anthony’s season was his rebounding. He hauled in a career-high 8.1 rebounds per game, which is a number that also fell as the season went on, due to the presences of Tyson Chandler and Amar’e Stoudemire. 6.2 of those per game were defensive rebounds, which was another career-high for him. With Anthony on the bench, the Knicks’ rebound percentage fell to 47.8%, which is the worst of any Knick. Though Anthony’s presence on the court didn’t give the Knicks their best rebound percentage, he had the sharpest drop-off of any player.
Highlight of the Season
How potent was Carmelo Anthony on offense this season? Try dropping a Garden-record 62 points on 23-35 shooting. This had to be the most fun night of the entire year.