Behind every great player is a great team. After all, a player must win to be considered truly great. In basketball, it takes all five players on the court to win.
On April 08, 2012, New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony showed his greatness at Madison Square Garden. He stunned the Chicago Bulls with a game-tying three-pointer that forced overtime. Anthony then finished them off with a game-winning three-pointer. This was his defining moment on the Knicks so far.
As great as Anthony was, we cannot overlook how great his team was.
The Knicks stormed out to a 21-point lead in the first quarter. Their intense and suffocating defense set the tone early. The Knicks played hard and communicated. They were aggressive against the top team in the NBA. There is no statistic for hard work, effort and intensity, but the Knicks led the Bulls in all three categories.
In games like this, the shooter usually gets all the spoils. Anthony deserves the credit. This is why the Knicks brought him here. But his teammates deserve just as much credit, particularly two of them.
Rookie guard Iman Shumpert had a great game. He did it all for the Knicks (15 points, 9 rebounds, 6 assists, 4 steals). Most of all, Shumpert defended Bulls guard Derrick Rose well. He held him to 30% shooting and kept him out of rhythm. Guarding the reigning NBA MVP is no easy task. But Shumpert was very effective on Rose.
Center Tyson Chandler has been the personification of dirty work all season long. 10 of his 16 rebounds were on the offensive side. Nobody on the Knicks defends and rebounds like Chandler. He fights for every loose ball. He plays intense defense all the time. The Knicks would be much worse off without the effort of Chandler.
Anthony was truly great on Sunday. He deserves all the accolades. But the same praise must go to Shumpert, Chandler and the other unsung heroes on the Knicks. Without them, Anthony would have no opportunity to shine. Together, they can be good enough to defeat the top team in the NBA.
More from Edwin Torres:
Edwin Torres was born in New York City. He has been a Knicks fan since the early 1980s. He has visited Madison Square Garden on many occasions to watch the Knicks and his favorite player, Patrick Ewing. For more articles, follow him on Twitter @FlipPoker.
- Sports & Recreation
- New York Knicks
- Carmelo Anthony
- Madison Square Garden
- Tyson Chandler