By Matt Constas on July 17, 2014
With a rookie head coach and a superstar who hasn't had success in the playoffs throughout his career, the New York Knicks might be headed for some rough years. Head coach Derek Fisher and Carmelo Anthony look to defy those odds, and here are five reasons why their partnership will allow them to do so.
One of the main worries Anthony had about returning to the Big Apple was the current state of the Knicks. Anthony, who averaged 27 points and eight rebounds per game in 2013-14, didn't have much of a supporting cast and felt "alone" on the court (30.1 usage rate ranked fourth in the league). Fisher will install more of a team atmosphere, with the triangle offense system taking some of the pressure off of Melo.
One knock Anthony's critics have on him is that he doesn't make the players around him better. Well, with that new system coming into play he will have to become a better passer and will. If he is playing the stretch four or even the three position, he will get the ball in a lot of passing situations. If teammates like J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert among others can come out confident, Anthony will find them and average a career high in assists.
While Fisher is entering his first year as a coach, the big man upstairs will be there to help him. Phil Jackson, who has 11 titles as a coach and two more as a player, will be able to impart his wisdom on both Fisher and Anthony whenever he wants. The Zenmaster is one of the most, if not the most, knowledgeable basketball minds there is and will definitely be willing to share it with these guys.
Derek Fisher is a lovable man, and while they don't have too much of a relationship heading into the season, there is definitely a great chance for Anthony and Fisher to become pals. They are both players by trade, so they know and respect each other. Fisher has built great and successful relationships with the likes of Kobe Bryant and most recently Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. Why can't he and Anthony build a great relationship as well?
We all know what Anthony wants to do at this point in his career: Win. Who joins on with Fisher (five titles) and Jackson (13 titles) to lose? These guys know how to win. Nobody sold out, either, because they all want to win as well. Expect Anthony, a guy who already plays hard, to come out more motivated and play with more heart than he ever has before.
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