Opening Tip: Melo + Bargnani = Success?

October, 18, 2013
10/18/13
8:00
AM ET
BALTIMORE -- Mike Woodson experimented with playing Carmelo Anthony and Andrea Bargnani together at the power forward and center positions, respectively, on Thursday night.

And in a statement that may scare some Knicks fans who value interior defense, Woodson says he likes what he saw.

"We started with the big lineup but also put Melo back at the 4 and had Bargnani at the 5 and that was pretty positive," Woodson said. "I'll go back and look at it a little closely on tape."

To be clear, Woodson did not commit to the idea of playing Anthony and Bargnani at power forward and center in the regular season. It was probably something that he was curious about, so he decided to try it in a preseason game.

The overall numbers actually weren't that bad. When Bargnani and Anthony were on the floor together and Tyson Chandler was on the bench, the Knicks were outscored, 49-42. It's worth noting that forward Ike Diogu was out there at times alongside Bargnani and Anthony. So Diogu may have guarded the opposing power forward or center for some stretches.

But with Bargnani and Anthony on the floor together, and Chandler on on the bench, the Knicks allowed Washington to score 30 points on shots within three feet of the basket

For comparison's sake -- thought it's not a perfect comparison -- the Knicks gave up an average of 39 points per game in the paint last season. So, based on the small sample size of Thursday's game, it seems like the Knicks will be susceptible to scoring in the paint with Anthony and Bargnani at power forward and center. That's not very surprising, given both players' reputations on defense.

All of the above, though, brings us to our question: Do you want to see Woodson experiment with Anthony and Bargnani at the power forward and center spots? Could that lineup have success? Or should he stay away from it?

UP NOW: Carmelo Anthony says he will opt out of his contract after this season. But that doesn't necessarily mean he plans to leave New York.. Mike Woodson wants Anthony to focus on basketball, rather than his free agency.

Speaking of free agency, Ian O'Connor says that as long as Carmelo's best shot to win isn't at MSG, he'd be a fool not to test the waters this summer.

Lastly, Iman Shumpert and Pablo Prigioni both suffered elbow injuries in Thursday's win over Washington. We should have more on their ailments Friday afternoon.

WHAT'S NEXT: The Knicks will practice on Friday in preparation for Monday's preseason game against Toronto.

QUESTION: Do you want to see Mike Woodson experiment with playing Carmelo Anthony and Andrea Bargnani together at the power forward and center spots? Could that lineup have success? Or should he stay away from it?

You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.

Ian Begley

ESPN New York Writer

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Carmelo Anthony
PTS AST STL MIN
24.1 3.1 0.9 35.9
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsA. Stoude... 7.0
AssistsJ. Calderon 4.6
StealsS. Larkin 1.3
BlocksL. Amundson 1.9