The New York Knicks have had quite the tumultuous 2012-2013 NBA season. After an incredibly hot start to their season and getting off to an 18-5 record, they hit a bit of a shooting slump and cooled off a good deal. They seemed to find new life with the return of Amar’e Stoudemire, though — but that also went away when Stoudemire was injured, along with Tyson Chandler.
Nowadays, the Knicks are still without Stoudemire and Chandler and have largely been reduced to just a two-man show starring Carmelo Anthony and J.R. Smith. The Knicks are a team that thrives and succeeds largely because of how they play offensively, and it seems pretty safe to say that Melo and Smith are going to dominate the offense from here on out.
Smith and Anthony are the two leaders for New York in points and shot attempts. Anthony averages 27.6 points per game on 21.5 attempts and Smith averages 16.9 points per game on 15.2 shots. That’s obviously a pretty large part of their offense that comes from those two players.
On Tuesday night against the Boston Celtics, though, we caught a glimpse of just how reliant the Knicks are going to be on Smith and Anthony down the stretch this season. Against Boston, the duo accounted for 61 of the Knicks’ 100 total points and for 54 of the team’s 90 total shots.
Just to heighten those stats even more, Anthony had a usage percentage of 46.4 percent in the game and Smith had a usage percentage of 32.8 percent. That’s an absolutely absurd amount of possessions and shots that went through the hands of those two players.
As the Knicks look ahead towards the postseason, it’s understandable why they would rely on Anthony and Smith so heavily. Those two are easily the most prolific scorers that are healthy on their roster.
However, relying on them as much as they did on Tuesday night is going to prove to be a problem. It’s been proven time and again that having just a two-man show with little help won’t get you anywhere in this league.