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Melo's Issues Front And Center Against Magic -espn

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Melo's Issues Front And Center Against Magic -espn

By Mike Kurylo
ESPN TrueHoop

Two days removed from an exciting win over the East's second best team, the Knicks' loss in Orlando is a tough pill to swallow.

New York overpowered the Magic early on, outscoring Orlando 37-15 in the second quarter and appearing poised for a second straight victory (and first back-to-back wins in the Melo era). However, the Knicks melted down at the end of the third quarter, allowing Orlando to score unanswered on three straight possessions in both the third and fourth quarters, and ultimately fell to the Magic 116-110 in Orlando.

There was some fiery play, as the teams combined for five technical fouls, but New York's offense lacked a spark.

The Knicks followed up a meager shooting night in South Beach on Sunday (43.8 percent effective field goal percentage) with a pathetic 41.3 percent in Orlando. And at the center of is problem is Carmelo Anthony.

In four games for New York, Melo has done well by traditional statistics, averaging 27 points per game. However, advanced stats show him to be a drain on the offense.

Anthony has taken 93 field goal attempts to net 108 points, a poor ratio. And while the league average in trueshooting percentage is usually around 54 percent, Anthony has a TS% of 50.2 percent for New York Compare these numbers to Chauncey Billups, who has scored 93 points on only 49 shots, with a 65.5 TS% in the blue and orange, and it's clear which has been the better Knick thus far.

There was a lot of support around the league for the Anthony deal, but there was also a sizable contingency who felt Carmelo didn't address the team's needs. Prior to the big trade, New York had a potent offense, a weak defense, and needed depth at point guard and center. And while the Knicks added more offensive fire power in Melo, they never addressed some of their biggest weaknesses before the trade deadline.

And even though he's one of the leading scorers in the league, Carmelo's style of scoring may not mesh with Knicks' offense. Melo scores primarily using isolations and post-ups and doesn't possess an accurate 3-point shot -- all of which are antithetical to Mike D'Antoni's offense.

Given the Knicks' poor efficiency since the trade, it appears some of the worries may be vindicated.

Proponents of the Anthony move spoke well of his high-volume game -- especially his ability to create with the ball -- and its positive effect in the fourth quarter of close games.

But down the stretch against the Magic, Anthony missed all three of his field goal attempts, turned the ball over once and only managed four points.

New York was hoping that their deadline deal would put it amongst the East's best teams. But, despite besting the Heat in Miami, it doesn't look like the Knicks are there -- at least, not yet.

While blowing a possible win against Orlando may have been tough for Knick fans, being saddled with an ill-fitted Anthony for the long haul might be an even bigger pill to swallow


HotSnot
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I completely agree with all

I completely agree with all of these points. Mike Kurylo got it bang on. If only the Knicks could have picked up Billups and dropped Melo from the deal. I know that sounds completely ridiculous but Billups was what the Knicks needed. Wilson Chandler (Knicks wouldn't resign him anyways) and Felton for Billups might have been enough. Hang on to Mozgov and Gallo and finish out the season. Let the chips fall where they may in summer when/if Melo goes to free agency.

Chrischi
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It's been 4 games.

It's been 4 games.

IndianaBasketball
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Didn't we learn anything from

Didn't we learn anything from jumping on the Heat too early?

It's only been four games... The players will adjust.

NYCrealdeal
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its not like there

0-4 there 2-2 so far with the new players. a win vs the bucks and a really good win against the heat. they had a horroible loss to the cavs and a close game with magic. theyll be fine in the regular season and i will go out and say that that mami boston chicago do not wantt o face nyk 1st round

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Knicks dont want to face

Knicks dont want to face Orlando or Chicago in the Playoffs, that could very well be the end of their run. They really have a gaping hole in the C position and those two teams will expose it. ROse constantly penetrating and attacking the rim, along with Noah and his great aggressiveness, and we saw how Howard destroyed the Knicks, who were gaurding him with Williams in the beggining. I want to see the Knicks succeed, they have alot of haters, I just dont see it happening until they get a C.

Sup
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They are better than the

They are better than the heat, so that's a good start

kngojc
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OhCanada

You're right, all they need is for either Amar'e to play out of his position and play with a more defensive mindset or look to get a good, strong, defensive center in the summer this year by way of drafting one(even though the draft seems pretty weak) or signing one. Either way they are about two or three role players away from being a championship team, I think.

doubledribbler
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2-2

Personally I don't think Melo and Amare complement each other, but that's my opinion. With that said, I wouldn't re-do the trade. One of the worst ideas I have heard is the one above saying drop Melo from the trade. Sure Billups can still play, but what idiot of a GM is going to say I have no interest in your superstar that you are thinking about trading....I want your aging and over paid pg to lead my team. Not sure you can panic, especially at 2-2. Before the trade the Knicks were only two games over. For those that don't remember they started off hot, as the schedule got tougher they struggled, which leads me to believe that the team wasn't as good as their record had looked when they started off so strong. Maybe I'm used to rooting for some successful teams. I would have no problem breaking up a team that's barely at .500.

Michael.S.
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Are you sure New York is

Are you sure New York is better than Miami? I have a hard time believing that.z

Jlv2012
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I think losing to the Cavs pretty much summarizes

the Knicks real championship contention.

HotSnot
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@ DoubleDribbler. I knew it

@ DoubleDribbler.

I knew it as soon as I wrote it. I know its only been 4 games but Melo is a six foot 8 Allen Iverson. He is a volume shooter and he takes bad shots. As a "superstar" player anything under a 45% fg% is pretty bad. He needs to be the focal point of the offense and loves the one on one game. He is also a poor 3 point shooter and his help defense is unhelpful. All of these attributes go against the very nature of SSOL offense. As you mentioned I think they can work it out, but will it be Melo changing his game to suit the team or the team changing the way they play to suit Melo?

Melo was definitly a worthwhile addition but this Knicks team won't get out of the 1st round of the playoffs without size... which they have none of. If your talking longterm then this stuff doesn't matter but I just think, what if you called Melo's bluff and let him go to FA? Deron Willliams is in the exact same boat. He either extends now before the next CBA with NJ of all teams or he takes the risk and goes to FA with perhaps a much lower Max contract limit.

Chandler is a quality player but he is a FA this offseason and I really doubt NY was going to retain him/pay him. Trading for Billups would have allowed NY to perserve its cap space untill the end of 2011 season aswell as providing a mentor for Douglas and providing a steading voice for the offense.

Is the entire idea absurd? Yes, yes it is. Is it wrong? Not in my little opinion.

Michael.S.
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Jlv- I'd like to start seeing

Jlv- I'd like to start seeing you e serious with your posts...I honestly think you know alot but just rather get on peoples nerves-well not really, but still. I think you could contribute to these forums if you decided to.

blood
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...

Howard is going to knicks b...howard,amare,melo,fields,billups/douglas... CHAMPS B,CHAMPS

Boomshakalaka
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The Knicks got a superstar

I am not sure if the Carmelo(The Superstar) fits into their system and he definitly is not the answer to what the team of the first half of the season was missing. But this trade was not to improve the first half team it was to revamp it. the trade totally changed the character of the team. I still think it will work out for they Knicks because they are slowly compiling elite players. So this year they will go as far as they can go but over the next couple seasons as long as they make the right personnel decisions we can look forward to alot from the Knicks. I mean look at their building blocks Amare, Carmelo, Billups and endless Big Apple Money lol

flyboy
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Good points made

However, it's entirely too early to already label the new Knicks as a failed experiment. Let's see how they adjust with their new roster in place and give the Knicks some time to mesh their old and new players together before writing them off.

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