New York Knicks

New York Knicks: Does Carmelo Anthony's Playing Style Fit D'Antoni's System?

MIAMI, FL - FEBRUARY 27:  Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks stands on the court during a game against the Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena on February 27, 2011 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
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Philip LombardoCorrespondent IMarch 1, 2011

Three games into the "Carmelo Era" and a lot of questions are being raised about what to expect of Anthony and the Knickerbockers this season, as well as in seasons to come.

Many of these questions were being talked about long before 'Melo even joined New York, but one issue that has gained some attention recently is this—Does Anthony's specific playing style mesh well with the run and gun offense of Coach D'Antoni?

Everyone knows that Carmelo is Brooklyn born and has dreamed of being a Knick since his days on the blacktop.  And, everyone knows that Anthony can score at will and has a presence on the court that cannot be ignored.

But the real concern is whether the Carmelo we have seen in Denver will be the same Carmelo donning the orange and blue.

Anthony is averaging 27.7 points, nine rebounds and two assists in three games since joining New York.  In those three games, New York has beaten Milwaukee at home, lost in Cleveland and won in Miami.

I will never understand why the Knicks are 0-2 against Cleveland this year, but we will sum that game up as a fluke and focus on the big win in South Beach.

Carmelo's offensive style is not one best suited for an uptempo offense like that of the Knicks, but the thing about Anthony is that he will get his points no matter what team he is playing for. 

'Melo loves the one on one game.  He will take anyone on in the mid-post and do damage because he is such a versatile threat. 

He has the quickness and strength to get to the hoop or he can create enough separation for an easy little jumper.  He can shoot the three, but that isn't his strongest quality and he doesn't necessarily move the best without the ball. 

We did see some improvement in his off-ball movement against Miami, and I think it will only get better as the team meshes more.  Although people have questioned his defensive ability, Carmelo's defense against Miami was borderline inspiring.  He wanted to man LeBron in the fourth quarter and he did a superb job in doing so.

But the thing I love most about this acquisition is that the Knicks needed a more balanced attack on offense. 

Yes, they had Amare doing the dirty work from the elbows in, but Carmelo does damage all over the court, so defenses can't just focus on Amare or clamp down on the perimeter.  'Melo's style of offense keeps the defense honest, which I think is the key to having a playoff caliber team.

So no, Carmelo's arsenal may not be the "best fit" for New York, but his arsenal is a deadly one, so any team would improve with him on the court. And I don't think any of the top four teams in the East want to see a combination of Stat and 'Melo in the first round, or any round for that matter.

James Dolan and Donnie Walsh may not always see eye to eye, but collectively, they have done a great job of turning this team from a laughingstock to a formidable opponent in a very short amount of time. 

What do you guys think?  Next remix of Wiz Khalifa's hit song, "Black and Yellow" will be a NY Knicks remix called "Stat and Melo". 

I wouldn't be surprised.

 

Phil Lombardo is a Feature Columnist for the New York Knicks here at the Bleacher Report.  Any comments/like would be much appreciated.  Be on the lookout for more articles to come!

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