Woe to the New York Knicks

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Chris Broussard on the end of Linsanity and the onset of Melodrama:


Management, the coaching staff and the players know Anthony is hurting the offense and in turn, the defensive morale, according to the sources. While D'Antoni's offense calls for Anthony to plant himself on the wing at the 3-point line, he often creeps in to his favorite spot in the floor -- the area between the elbow, the arc and the post. 

That kills the Knicks' ability to run the high pick-and-roll and ruins the spacing that is so critical to D'Antoni's offense. "That's at the very core of our problem," one person close to the situation said. "That messes up the fluidity of the offense. Melo could do it, but he's got to trust the offense." 

When Anthony first returned -- and it still appears to be the case -- Lin would bring the ball upcourt and try to run D'Antoni's system. When Anthony would abandon the offense, Lin would not pass him the ball, which irritated Anthony, sources said. So when Lin tried to talk to Anthony on the court, Anthony would turn his back to the point guard and tune him out. 

I don't know basketball strategy well enough to assess Melo's play in D'Atoni's system. But I've always wanted to read a piece from an athlete on why it's so difficult to buy in and submit to what the coach wants to do. 
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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

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