There’s a buzz at the Garden and a billboard up outside of it, but when it comes to results, the Carmelo Anthony era in New York is off to a slow start.
The Knicks are 6-6 since acquiring Anthony on Feb. 22. They’ve actually gained a game on the fifth-place Hawks in that time, but have lost two games (in the loss column) on the seventh-place Sixers.
Bottom line, the Knicks aren’t necessarily a better team now than they were before the trade. And clearly, defense is the problem.
Knicks’ efficiency, 2010-11
|Timeframe||Pace||Off. Eff.||Def. Eff.||Diff.|
Pace = Possessions per 48 minutes
Off. Eff. = Points scored per 100 possessions
Def. Eff. = Points allowed per 100 possessions
Since the break, the Knicks have the fourth-best offense in the league, but the 24th-best defense. And it’s not like they’ve been playing some offensive juggernauts in that stretch. In fact, eight of their last 12 opponents are in the bottom half of the league offensively. They allowed the Pacers to shoot 54 percent over two games in the last few days, after Indiana shot just 41 percent over their previous six games.
The Knicks lost depth in the trade, but they made it to unite Anthony with Amar’e Stoudemire. Two stars are better than one, after all. But Anthony and Stoudemire aren’t the best fit offensively, and obviously, neither is a good defender.
With two All-Stars on the floor together, the Knicks should have a big advantage over their foes. But thus far, they’ve outscored their opponents by just a single point in 335 minutes with Anthony and Stoudemire on the floor together.
Knicks’ efficiency since trade
|On the court||MIN||Off. Eff.||Def. Eff.||Diff.||+/-|
|Anthony + Stoudemire||335||110.5||110.9||-0.4||+1|
|Anthony w/o Stoudemire||98||105.9||107.5||-1.6||+7|
|Stoudemire w/o Anthony||105||112.1||103.3||+8.8||+22|
Note: The first two show up has having a negative difference but a positive plus-minus because possessions are based on a formula (not actual trips down the floor), which estimates that the Knicks had more offensive possessions than defensive possessions with that combo/individual on the floor.
That 110.9 points allowed per 100 possessions with both stars on the floor is pretty atrocious.
The Knicks have 16 more games to build chemistry and improve defensively before the playoffs, but the early returns on the Anthony-Stoudemire tandem aren’t so great.