Thursday, March 17th, 2011 at 11:00 am  |  61 responses

Carmelo Anthony Finds the Knicks’ Defense Confusing

by Marcel Mutoni@marcel_mutoni

The Knicks are an unsightly 6-6 since acquiring Carmelo Anthony from Denver. And though it was expected that they would struggle defensively, even by New York’s standards, the effort on that end of the floor has been truly abysmal.

Now, believe it or not, but head coach Mike D’Antoni actually has a defensive plan — several of them, in fact. Which, according to Carmelo Anthony, is part of the problem.

With the squad still trying to mesh, Melo thinks it would be best to limit the number of defensive options, thus minimizing the confusion and errors.

From the NY Post:

“[We have to] come up with a scheme or a couple of schemes we’re going to stick with and do better at,” Anthony said yesterday. “Right now, one game we come in with one scheme. Another game we come in with a different scheme. I think it’s a bit confusing at times.” It was the second straight day Anthony took issue with the team’s defensive game plan. Following Tuesday’s 119-117 loss at Indiana, Anthony questioned the defense on Tyler Hansbrough, who played like a beast in two games against the Knicks, notching 59 points and two consecutive career highs.

“I don’t think we made adjustments to him at the top of the key, especially after the game he had in the Garden,” Anthony said in the visitor’s locker room Tuesday. “I’d think we’d have made adjustments after that.” The struggles of the Knicks’ defense has grown to alarming levels. Back-to-back losses to the mediocre Pacers — who scored 119 points Tuesday night and won it on a last-second Danny Granger jumper — have sent chills through the Knicks’ fan base once euphoric about the Melo blockbuster.

Widely considered as some kind of offensive genius, it’s more than a little ironic that Mike D’Antoni’s fate in New York will be determined largely by how well his team plays defense going forward.

Best of luck with that, coach.

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  • logues

    maybe because it doesnt exist?

  • http://www.slamonline.com Eboy

    Huh? What? Defensive schemes? Mike D’Antoni?

  • el_larsen

    hey melo it starts with you

  • http://Slamonline.com Rocksinmypants

    So he’s opted not to play it at all? Haha

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    D’Antoni stinks.

  • irondan21

    Really Melo? Your team plays no defense and you some how find that confusing? Just stand near someone on the other team and don’t let them run you over

  • runNgun

    What’s there to complain about, eh Melo? Defense doesn’t exist in D`Antoni’s world. Just score, score, score and hope your opponent doesn’t outscore you.

  • RobbieJay

    …WHAT defense

  • rik

    Anthony finds the knicks defense… doubt that!

  • robb

    Melo finds defense in general confusing, that’s why he doesn’t play it.

  • Mas

    SomE Sport Radio and TV Stations are talking about the Knicks as if they were supposed to WIN it all this year and that Coach is playing for a job next year. Only Douglas and Walker were in NYC last year. Give D’Antoni a full year with the core guys and then begin to make judgments. If Anthony finds the defense hard just have him close his eyes and imagine it’s the Heat every game. Maybe that will help.

  • Riggs

    oh come on dont be stupid folks, he clearly explained it in his statement. D’antoni spreads it out in different patterns and he switches it up for different games. If he sticks to at most 3 then it would be easier to remember. It’s the same thing the magic and the mavericks do. You cant say oh stick to your player, when theres different defensive assignments based on the pattern given. Also i find it funny how they can hold the hawks under 90 points and its “hey good defense by the knicks”, and when they give up 100 to the pacers its “what defense? they never play any” just shut up already.

  • truthteller

    @Robb: You took the words right out of my mouth!

  • Glenn

    Isn’t the other team supposed to find your defense confusing?

  • el_larsen

    miss anthony mason?

  • http://www.nba.com Gman

    Let Billups be the D coach on the floor. Problem Solved!! lol

  • Jose

    co-sign Gman: on the real tho, billups did bring a defesive mindset to Denver when he came, don’t hurt to try, though it’ll mean tweaking D’antoni’s offense

  • http://www.hoopsvibe.com/features/overdribbling chiqo

    george karl is somewhere laughing at all of this.

  • Clockwork

    What’s confusing about not playing defense?

  • http://slamonline.com tealish

    “Carmelo Anthony Finds Defense Confusing” would have sufficed.

  • Jono

    Look at the Knuggets, absolutely awesome!

    Who needs Melo?

  • Jacqueline Mitchell

    Oh well you get what you pay for.

  • CoraSong

    Defense, We talkin’ bout defense?!

  • Hoop Dogger

    Look out, LaLa’s hubby is a coach killer. And a defense killer. And a ball movement killer.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/other-ballers/international/2010/03/flight-75-dc-to-moscow/ Mitya

    I was SMHing at how Amare was just completely out of the picture on multiple defensive possessions in that last game

  • Kid Dynamite

    Maybe he also attended the same “I was never taught defense ” school that Amare did…….

  • JD

    maybe he just cant grasp that the knicks dont play any D

  • http://www.stonesthrow.com Michael NZ

    Thats what happens when you have two of the leagues 5 worst defenders on your squad.

  • Red Star

    Mike D’Antoni is not a defence orientated coach nor is Melo defence orientated player. Why the surprise?

  • Red Star

    Mike D’Antoni is not a defence orientated coach nor is Melo defence orientated player. Why the surprise?

  • Red Star

    Mike D’Antoni is not a defence orientated coach nor is Melo defence orientated player. Why the surprise?

  • http://www.michaelcho.com M Cho

    he’s barely been in NYC a month and he’s already calling out the coach. More and more these days, I can understand why Jerry Sloan left the NBA. It really has become a place where star players think they can do whatever they want.

  • ab40

    can we start the fire mike D campaing yet? He’s got a good team now two great players and he’s still not winning.


    The Knicks TEAM DEFENSE is a work in progress and will come together with better communication, enough so to win games. You can book it, like you can book Carmelo becoming a more complete player in New York now that he’s no longer playing for the bitter diva in Denver. I’m quite sure Ray Allen who played for the diva when in Milwaukee can sympathize. This is the truth I am speaking, but Nuggie fans won’t like it.

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/officerbarbrady what

    I have only seen about 3 Knicks games since the trade so I might be talking out of my azz, but am I the only one who thinks when Chauncey is on the bench and Toney Douglas is in the game their defense gets much better?

  • http://www.fbi.gov DPfan

    Defense wins championships!

  • JL

    this team is stripped. why is anyone suprised. you take out the supporting players other than landry fields and instead put in melo and billups, and your improvement is probably the other way. this team is more about the future than this year. don’t worry about it. just like why miami struggles, because their supporting cast is underperforming and hurt. if they had miller playing like his regular self and haslem healthy, they are a much better team.

  • gani

    Maybe they’d be better on defense if they kept Corey Brewer.

  • http://www.stonesthrow.com Michael NZ

    @IAMORANGE4EVER: Its Melo’s eighth year (EIGHTH!) and he’s playing for D’Antoni so forget about him magically becoming a more complete (read: defensive minded) player at this stage ok. Not happening.

  • youngmuggsy

    I’m sure Melo’s losing a ton of sleep over his defensive struggles.

  • Anthony

    melo needs to just shut up……….. he cant play d

  • http://www.slamonline.com melvin ely

    I’m curious how Melo found the Knicks defense AT ALL. Cuz I’ve been looking and I don’t see it.

  • tomtom

    Everybody saying how bad d’antoni is dont forget that last Suns team he coached played great D (other than nashty). Look up the stats, they were a killer defensive team as well as being fast paced. signed M D’antoni

  • KB8TOSG8

    I want to know where he found Knicks’ D. It’s been non-existent for the entire year……

  • http://slamonline.com Ugh

    Big ups to riggs for actually reading and commenting on the article!

  • Denver fan

    Oh Melo hoe NY workin for ya? You went to a worse team the Nuggets are 9-2 without you.

  • Denver fan


  • Justin

    lol@IAMORANGE…12 games with a basically new team and he wants to fire the coach. Man, fans are so ridiculous. Especially the ones on this site. Karl Malone was right in his interview after Jerry Sloan got fired. It’s not up to the coach to tell you how to play defense. It’s up to you to watch tape and break down the man you’re going to be guarding, following his tendencies and figuring out how to stop him. It’s called being a professional and too many of today’s prima donnas don’t have a clue what that means

  • OvaChicken

    The Nuggets are playing tite team ball right now. They would tare NY a new one.
    As long as Melo & Amare lead , the Knix will have no defensive staability.

  • http://hoopistani.blogspot.com hoopistani

    ‘Carmelo Anthony finds the Knicks Defense Confusing’
    A player that doesn’t play defense is confused by the defense of a team that doesn’t play defense.
    A party of oxymorons, ironies, and confusion.

  • Vietballer

    Title should read “Carmelo Anthony finds Defense Confusing”

    To all you muppets out there who are Melo fans…Dude don’t play no D. No D = no championships. Defence ain’t that hard. You just need to have heart and put your body on the line. Sucker punch anyone?

    I’d take Wilson Chandler over Melo in the Knicks system any day.

  • Hambone

    Remove the words “the Knicks” from the headline

  • rondo4mvp

    Hahahahahahahahaahahahahah knicks playing friggin d wtf

  • http://hibachisabas.blogspot.com/ Toni Kukoc

    “i missed a defensive assignment…if a coach says that i missed a defensive assignment that ya all hear it…i mean i might’ve missed one defensive assignment this year…but if somebody says that i don’t play defense on one play this year thats enough, if i can’t play defense – i can’t play defense, if im hurt – im hurt…but its not about that at all…but its easy to talk about it, its easy to sum it up, when you just talk about defense…we sitting here and i am a franchise player and we talking bout defense? I mean listen we are talking about DEFENSE! Not a game not a game, we talking about defense! We talking bout defense, we talking bout defense, how silly is that?! what are we talking bout? defense?! we talking about defense!!! ”

    ~Melo, March 2011

  • Justin

    ^^^ Taking idiocy to a WHOLE new level. IT’S…NOT…FUNNY!!!

  • http://slamonline.com Mars

    Lack of defense actually works! It gasses teams up, and then when you actually play some D they realize there not that good. It’s a scheme all great coaches use.

  • darko’s doughnuts


  • http://slamonline.com cold as ice

    it’s funny to me. though it’s been 13 games since the stat/melo saga has begun its gets better and better. we all know defense isn’t a d’antoni priorty all the time. but and i do mean “but” he does stress defense to a point. yea your tryna out score the other team. but u gotta give him credit to a point. he has been to the wcf. he has beaten gd defensive teams in the playoffs. has he gotten to the promise land. naw! will he. u never know. yea its been 13 games and were calling for his head. but maybe we should wait till december. cause by that time u would gotten training camp. and about 20 to 25 games in. and if it dont work hand him the pink slips. but he needs to get a defensive coach like celtics had in thibeadou. (however u spell his name.) and have the team work with him. because u can always score. a’mare know gentry taught him d. as well as billups helped melo. and melo did guard kobe gd in the wcf. give it some time. but the two biggest phrases of the decade gotta be my man ai with…PRACTICE we hear talking about PRACTICE…and D’antoni with the word DEFENSE!!! the words for the decade of the NBA. DEFENSE AND PRACTICE! LOL

  • dru york

    funny melo says that…. granger comes back in second game and torch melo…wats confusing is he cant ever stay in front of his man… with his xbox defense

  • ohkho1

    Carmelo is just a Set-Up, He want’s to set everyone around him for failure just because he weak himself he thinks he has a right to take everyone down with him. All your are Carmelo is a “WANNA BE” SUPERSTAR GANGSTER, AND A HOOD RAT. Carmelita you and got no shame. They should send you to Kuwait to Play Dumb. That is why he kept on getting caught with weed cause he a dopephine can’t even concentrate on the game from all the smoking and the worst part he ALWAYS WANTS to play the blame game. And I don’t understand how this monkey running the coaches why they so scare of him?

  • ohkho1

    All of a sudden J.R. playing well since Carmelo left the team. Well not only him but the hole Team. Chauncey needs to come back and keep on teaching the nuggets. And ever since Carmelita left all the gangster signs And Devolic Signs Stopped it seams like J.R. Calmed himself down. KEEP ON THE GOOD JOB NUGGETS.