Carmelo Anthony came back from injury last night, and the Knicks immediately lost to the horrible Nets 100-92 at home.But Melo isn’t a cancer. The Knicks aren’t doomed. And Linsanity isn’t over. Yet.
Lin still ran the team. The big worry was that Melo would hijack the offence and run isolation plays from the wing like he did before Lin arrived. But for the most part, he worked within the Lin-dominant offence the Knicks have been winning with over the last two weeks.
Melo missed make-able shots. He was downright awful last night. He missed three gimme lay-ups in the first quarter alone and was totally out of whack after that. But that’s probably the result of rust rather than some inherent conflict with Lin.
defence was a bigger issue than offence last night. The Knicks’ best perimeter defender, Iman Shumpert, was out injured. And the team’s best interior defender, Tyson Chandler, was in and out of the game because of foul trouble. As a result, Deron Williams absolutely torched a Knicks team that has been one of the best defensive teams in the NBA since Lin entered the lineup.
The Knicks have the hardest schedule in the NBA from now until the end of the season. So if Melo has trouble assimilating into the team, things could take a dramatic turn for the worse.
But Lin still played well last night. And despite Carmelo’s struggles, none of the flaws we saw in the Nets loss appeared to be incurable.
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