After their first 16 games of the 2012-2013 NBA season, the Knicks are already 12-4 and leading the Atlantic division. Furthermore, they are currently tied with the Miami Heat for the best record in the Eastern Conference.
The Knicks have been playing very well so far and they have been led by superstar forward Carmelo Anthony. Anthony leads the team with 26.6 points per game. He has a 46.4% field goal percentage, and also averages 6.9 rebounds per game and 2.1 assists per game.
Anthony is supported by the reigning Defensive Player of the Year in center Tyson Chandler. Chandler this year has elevated his offensive game by averaging 12.2 points per game, along with 8.9 rebounds per game and a 71.3% field goal percentage.
Point guard Raymond Felton has averaged 15.1 points per game, 6.8 assists per game and has a 43% field goal percentage so far. Shooting guard J.R. Smith has added 13.6 points per game, 5.1 rebounds per game, 2.8 assists per game and a 41.8% field goal percentage. Rounding out the starting five is Ronnie Brewer, who has averaged 7.1 points per game and has a 45.4% field goal percentage.
The Knicks bench has also been very productive. Veteran backup point guard Jason Kidd (8.0 points per game, 3.4 assists per game, 2.08 steals per game, 51.8% field goal percentage), forward Steve Novak (8.1 points per game) and forward Rasheed Wallace (7.2 points per game) have all contributed notably to the Knicks' success. Fellow veterans Marcus Camby and Kurt Thomas provide additional depth off the bench as well.
However, the Knicks are hoping to get star forward Amar'e Stoudemire back from a left knee injury by Christmas. Stoudemire has yet to play in a regular season game due to the injury and his return will make the Knicks even better than they already are.
Here are five reasons why Stoudemire's return will give the Knicks an additional boost in their quest to make a deep postseason run.