The New York Knicks are 30 games into a new era. Carmelo Anthony is confident that the chemistry issues will be sorted out before season’s end.
Team president Phil Jackson has revitalized the New York Knicks by making drastic changes to a losing formula. He hired a new head coach, acquired three new starters, and built a bench that features seven new contributors.
With 10 new players and a new head coach, the Knicks were all but destined to run into chemistry issues in the early stages of the 2016-17 season.
New York is far better off than it could be with a 16-14 record through 30 games. Nevertheless, there have been discouraging signs of inconsistency, including a healthy supply of lopsided losses against postseason-caliber opponents.
According to Ian Begley of ESPN New York, franchise player Carmelo Anthony knows there’s still work to be done, but is happy with the progress being made.
“I like where we’re at, considering this team coming together for the first time two months ago,” he said. “There’s still some things we will get better at as the season goes along. Guys are starting to feel more comfortable out there with one another and on the court with themselves and what we’re trying to do.
“Overall, I like where we’re at. I know we’ve got to get better. I know we will get better. But overall, I like where we’re at.”
This is an almost entirely new team, which makes Anthony’s comments both fair and practical.
Thus far in 2016-17, the Knicks are 3-10 against teams that are .500 or better and 13-4 against teams with a record below .500. That’s a telling sign of where the Knicks are at this current juncture.
New York is talented enough to defeat teams that it’s better than, but is struggling to hold its own against equal competition.
Winning the games that a team is expected to win can result in a postseason appearance, but a deep run through the playoffs requires victories against high-level competition.
New York has three star-caliber players in Anthony, Kristaps Porzingis, and Derrick Rose. That star power, as well as the presence of the likes of Brandon Jennings, Courtney Lee, and Joakim Noah, should have the Knicks competing with any team in the NBA.
If team chemistry improves, New York’s record and success rate against postseason-caliber opponents should follow suit.