Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Melo to mates: Look in the mirror
By Ian Begley
Carmelo Anthony was worried about the Knicks' confidence after road losses to Memphis and Oklahoma City last week.
"We're not playing with a high level of confidence right now," he said on Sunday. "... I think we need to get back to that and get back to having fun."
Anthony noticed his teammates having fun 'in spurts' on Monday against the Magic. But confidence remains an issue for a few of the Knicks, according to Anthony.
"I think everybody’s got to dig deep down inside their own self, and look themselves in the mirror, ask themselves are they playing the way they should be playing?" Anthony said after practice on Tuesday. "At this point in time, as a group, as a whole, we’re a very confident team. But individually, we need everybody to boost that up a little bit."
The Knicks have lost three straight after winning four in a row and are stuck at 6-7 entering Wednesday's game against Phoenix.
They are 20-21 since trading for Anthony last February [20-25 if you count the postseason]. Their offense is struggling; they are ranked 22nd in efficiency, based on points per 100 possessions. And they are a work in progress on defense.
"It's minor things that we need to fix, a couple things defensively," Anthony said. "For the most part defensively, we’re doing a pretty good job. It’s just, like I said, when the lid is on the basket and you're not making shots, it makes it tough for everybody."
MELO TWEAKS SHOT TO COMPENSATE FOR INJURY: Anthony said his sprained right ankle, which caused him to miss last Saturday's loss at Oklahoma City, was 'sore' but feeling better on Tuesday. His left wrist injury is still bothersome.
Anthony missed 18 of 27 shots on Monday against Orlando. Afterward, he said his shot was 'flat' because he couldn't support the ball with his left hand.
On Tuesday, he worked on tweaking his form to compensate for the injury.
"I was trying to grip the ball a little bit more; I was trying to play around with the ball, just to see what I feel comfortable with and what I don’t," he said.
Anthony will play with both injuries for the second game on Wednesday. But it's the wrist injury that will hinder him most.
"It is what it is at this point," Anthony said. "But I’m getting through, I’m going to be alright."