A lot has been said in a few short days about Carmelo Anthony and the Knicks, but it seems like they are going to click sooner rather than later.
Melo has dropped 27, 28, 29 points in his first three games and has been pulling in around eight rebounds each game.
Amar'e Stoudemire is still scoring big as usual and Chauncey Billups has been a nice surprise (not that it should be surprising).
However, it isn't the big scoring by STAT, Melo and Billups that is winning the games; it is defense.
The Knicks held the Heat to 86 points tonight, far under the average opposing team score against New York.
Also, two of the biggest plays in tonight's game came late in the fourth quarter on the defensive end. The first was Chauncey's steal following his deep three. Billups didn't score himself on the break, but Shawne Williams hit both free throws after being fouled.
The next play, which should be all over SportsCenter and the NY newspaper's back-page, is STAT blocking LeBron James in the final seconds of a game.
Hopefully the Knicks will take these plays to heart and realize defense is what will lead them to the promised land.
Scoring will not be a problem with a starting 5 of STAT, Melo, Chauncey, Landry Fields and Ronny Turiaf. Instead, what the Knicks need to focus on is defense.
If tonight was the start of a trend for New York, they can start to see themselves as a contendor instead of just a playoff team.
Games coming up against the Celtics and Magic will be major indicators of what we can expect of the new-look Knicks. The last time the Knicks and Celtics met, it came down to a last-second shot from STAT that just missed the buzzer.
Now, with Melo and Billups in town, the Knicks are clearly a better team, and things are only going up.
They have won 2 of 3 games following the acquisition of Melo, and they have already shown some great signs in this short period.
Once the team really meshes, they are going to be amongst the favorites in the East behind Orlando, Boston and arguably on par with the Heat and Bulls.
On a side note, it was pretty great to hear all of the Knicks fans chanting adn booing LeBron James when he was at the free throw line.
I'm thinking there's a decent chance he wondered "what if I picked New York." I'm not saying he regrets his decision to take his talents to South Beach, they obviously have a great big 3 down there, but I'm sure the thought will cross his mind if it has not already.