PG Mario Chalmers
SG Dwyane Wade
SF Lebron James
PF Chris Bosh
C Joel Anthony
Key Reserves: Norris Cole, Udonis Haslem, Mike Miller
Without Carmelo Anthony, the Knicks face a tough matchup against the Miami Heat. The Heat have gone (5-1) without their all-star guard Dwyane Wade, but he will be back tonight and will present a myriad of problems. This game will be a gauge for the Knicks in terms of where they rank against the competition and can they win without Melo in the short-term.
Mario Chalmers is shooting 51% from the field while averaging 11.9 points per game and has been solid for the Heat early on. Now with Wade playing, the Knicks will have to defend another 20+ point scorer for the Heat.
Lebron James is having yet another MVP season and he has no plan on slowing down either. In his last game against the Pistons he put 32 points, six rebounds and seven assists. Chris Bosh is certainly taking advantage of the extra shots in the absence of D-Wade, but expect his numbers to go down tonight. On Wednesday night, he connected on 12 of the 15 shots he took finishing with 27 points. Joel Anthony like Battier doesn’t do much for you offensively, but his defensive intensity is unmatched.
Keys to Victory:
Transition Defense: The Miami Heat is a team that thrives in the open floor. If the Knicks want a shot at competing with the Heat, their defense will have to be much better than it is.
Take Care of the ball: The Knicks will need to limit their turnovers because the Miami will capitalize on them.
Speed the game up: Without Carmelo Anthony the Knicks can’t compete with the Heat in the half-court setting. So they’ll need to work quickly against this defense.