Are the New York Knicks the Best Team in the NBA?

Josh MartinNBA Lead WriterDecember 11, 2012

Round 2 of the "Clash of the Boroughs" went the way of the New York Knicks on Tuesday night. Carmelo Anthony carried his Manhattan 'mates all the way back from a 16-point first-half deficit against the Brooklyn Nets by way of a season-high 45-point outburst of his own.

But it was Jason Kidd who proved to be the hero in the end. His sixth three-pointer of the evening gave the visiting Knicks a 100-97 win over the Nets at the Barclays Center.

The home team registered four starters in double figures—including an 18-point, 10-assist showing from Deron Williams—and pounded the Knicks in the paint, 48-20. New York, though, was undaunted, nailing 14-of-28 three-point attempts on the way to bolstering their Eastern Conference-best 16-5 record.

The Knicks proved to be the better of the Big Apple's basketball offerings, but are they the best in the NBA? Are wins over the Nets, the Miami Heat (twice), the San Antonio Spurs (twice) and the Philadelphia 76ers (twice) enough to give Madison Avenue's most wanted top billing in the Association?

Or is New York's early-season success just a fluke? Can a 'Melo-led squad that leans so heavily on the long ball be discussed in the same category as the Heat, the Spurs and the Oklahoma City Thunder?

Or, is it simply too early to tell either way?