Carmelo Anthony set a Knicks record for 30 straight consecutive 20-point games, but Wednesday night wasn't about Melo.
This was about their $54 million big-man triumverate of Anthony-Amar'e Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler looking for the first time like a three-headed scoring monster.
Chandler and Stoudemire prospered in the paint, combining for 35 points to lead a balanced attack in last night's 113-97 victory over the Magic at the Garden.
This was hardly a one-man show starring Anthony as it has been lately. Stoudemire, a perfect 7-for-7 from the field, and Chandler, 10-for-11, were beasts around the rim. The Knicks (28-15) showed the balance coach Mike Woodson has sought with six players in double figures — and they didn't even have Jason Kidd (back).
Chandler finished with 21 points, Stoudemire had 14 and Anthony 20. Raymond Felton, off a fiery first quarter, added 15 points. Backup point guard Pablo Prigioni and J.R. Smith each had 11.
Though Woodson has no plans to start the trio, Anthony, Stoudemire and Chandler were on the court in the third quarter when they pulled away after being tied, 51-51, at halftime.
"As that lineup plays together, they will be more comfortable," Woodson said. "I thought they played great off one another."
Woodson had a talk with Chandler Tuesday, and told him he wasn't setting his picks sharp enough. Woodson also said he wanted him to be more aggressive offensively.
Since being named to his first All-Star team last week, Woodson noticed Chandler has not been playing as effectively.
"He told me to demand the ball more and I took his advice," said Chandler, who scored on the second possession on an alley-oop lob from Felton.
Meanwhile, Stoudemire continues to excel on post moves after his summer work with Hakeem Olajuwon. After he scored four straight inside buckets in the second half, he exited the game with 6:55 left to a standing ovation.
Melo, Amar'e & Tyson all thrive in Knicks' win
New York Post | Jan 31