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Carmelo Anthony says Knicks will ‘absolutely’ make the playoffs next season

Aug 19, 2014, 9:58 AM EDT

Brooklyn Nets v New York Knicks Getty Images

The Knicks finished eight games below .500 last season, but in the Eastern Conference, that only meant missing the playoffs by a single game in the standings.

A combination of injuries, coaching and personnel issues contributed to the dismal campaign, just one year removed from a successful season where New York made the playoffs, and advanced to the second round for the first time in 13 years.

The team has undergone a relative overhaul this offseason, adding Phil Jackson to the front office and installing Derek Fisher as the new head coach. There have also been some changes to the roster, and the combination of all of that has Carmelo Anthony feeling confident about the Knicks making an immediate return to the postseason.

From Fred Kerber of the New York Post:

In fact, Anthony on Monday asserted his belief the Knicks “absolutely” will be back in the playoffs after missing out last season.

“Yeah, I think so for sure. Absolutely,” an impressively slimmed-down Anthony said of the Knicks’ playoff chances before entering a Midtown gym for a late morning-to-early afternoon workout with a group of NBA players. …

“I can’t wait to get started,” said Anthony, who missed the playoffs for the first time in his career when the Knicks stumbled to a 37-45 record last season. “No goals. Not setting any goals, but I just can’t wait to get it back on.”

That “Midtown gym” is more than likely Jordan Brand’s Terminal 23 space, where Anthony and other NBA players have been seen working out on a regular basis this summer.

The Knicks didn’t add any key free agents to where the expected level of improvement would be obvious, although Jose Calderon (who came over in the trade that sent Tyson Chandler to the Mavericks) is a significant upgrade at the point guard position, which was brutal for the majority of last season.

Anthony has been doing everything he can personally to prepare for the upcoming campaign, and once you get past Chicago, Cleveland, Miami, Toronto, Washington and maybe Brooklyn, nothing is guaranteed in terms of the playoffs.

He may not expect to win a championship in the upcoming season, but the playoffs certainly seem to be within reach.

  1. clevelandrox - Aug 19, 2014 at 10:10 AM

    and what team, praytell, do the Knicks plan on taking playoff spot from last year? well two teams, cause the Cavs taking another spot. the Pacers probably out, but the Pistons have a nasty frontline and may sneak in, maybe the Heat if Wade isnt healthy. but i think its gon be a another disappointing season for Melo, its ok he got his millions to console him…

  2. pbtunpaidwriter - Aug 19, 2014 at 10:37 AM

    They should be a 6-8 seed. It’s not going to be easy though. Things should get much better in 2015.

    Check out this post on rim protectors:

    http://avb300.wordpress.com/

    • sportsfan18 - Aug 19, 2014 at 10:54 AM

      Should be a 6 to 8 seed?

      In NO particular order, the following teams should be ahead of the Knicks…

      Bulls
      Cavs
      Washington much improved
      Toronto won 11 games more than the Knicks last season
      Atlanta (Al Horford is back)
      Miami still easily in the middle of the pack in the East
      Nets (Brook Lopez is back)
      Charlotte – improved as well

      So, the Knicks are looking at the 9th seed if things go well for them. For them to sneak into the playoffs as the 8th seed, they need some help, like Al Horford going down again, or Brook Lopez going down again etc…

      Those 8 teams above should finish above the Knicks.

      But, they play the games for a reason… so we’ll have to wait and see.

      • avb300 - Aug 19, 2014 at 11:18 AM

        Melo should be great in the triangle with Bargnani and a healthy Amare. Calderon will be a perfect fit in the triangle. And they’ll actually play a little more D and move the ball this year under D-Fish.

        JR bottomed out last year and is healthy. TH Jr is getting better fast.

        Charlotte is still very young and isn’t guaranteed to be better than NY.

        I also have a feeling Phil isn’t done making moves. I did say it wouldn’t be easy…

  3. 76ersdoubletank - Aug 19, 2014 at 10:43 AM

    I would say that I CAN see this happening, but it will take a lot of things to go right for this Knicks team, at least how it looks on paper.

    First, simply look at the coaching situation. The Net tried this with Jason Kidd last year. It takes a little while to work out the kinks and really learn how to coach an NBA team each night, and deal with a staff. Adding that, along with a new offense, and the Knicks may not storm out of the gates.

    Second, the talent on this team is pretty lackluster outside of Melo’. Stoudamire has to give them 20-25 solid minutes per game this year. That is a must. Calderon is upgrade in terms of facilitating, but who else is going to score?

    If J.R. Smith shows what he showed the last month of the season, Dalembert does his best Chandler impression, and Tim Hardaway Jr. has a breakout year, I can see this team in as a 6-8 seed. So maybe Melo’ is right…

  4. John X - Aug 19, 2014 at 11:01 AM

    Just for the PG upgrade alone the Knicks will be in. They have the right pieces for a Triangle and Marc Gasol would make them contenders. With a couple of tweaks. Sounds like a Knick pipe dream! It’s all on Phil now.

    • dablakdrphil - Aug 19, 2014 at 6:03 PM

      When did Marc Gasol get traded to the Knicks? Lol…when did any “Gasol” go to the Knicks period?

  5. malek773 - Aug 19, 2014 at 11:09 AM

    Let’s just say the Knicks do make it in on the count of some team flopping or having crazy injuries or something. What are they Knicks going to do besides get eliminated in the first round? I like Melo as a player but he’s either drinking too much of that Phil Jackson koolaid or he’s flat out lying to the media to sound like he believes the Knicks will be relevant. This Knicks team is not close to being relevant. The east is better than people think. The knicks are not a top 8 team in the east as it stands now.

    • sportsfan18 - Aug 19, 2014 at 3:28 PM

      Melo’s weight loss came from his brains…

  6. Mr. Wright 212 - Aug 19, 2014 at 11:45 AM

    They will. Stop acting like last year was a portend of things to come and acting as if they didn’t just win 54 and the division the year before.

    • sportsfan18 - Aug 19, 2014 at 3:33 PM

      Mr. ignore reality.

      I already went through this with you. I listed their records from like the 2002/03 season on.

      For like 9 consecutive yrs or something they only won 20 or 30 something games.

      Twice over .500 and then back down to 30 something wins.

      Then they won 54 games. Then they went back down to 30 something wins the year after.

      So, in like the past 14 seasons, that 54 win season was an OUTLIER.

      The Knicks were 16 & 14 vs. the West that yr. But they beat up on the bottom feeders to get to those 16 wins. They beat the Jazz twice and the Wolves twice for 4 of those 16 wins against the west.

      Also, they beat other teams out of the playoffs in the west too. Against better teams in the west, the Knicks were 8 & 14 that season.

      Oh, playing in the weak east helped them too. The Knicks played over .700% against just teams from the East.

      So yeah, they won 54 games a few yrs back.

      But it sticks out like a sore thumb from what they’ve usually done the past 14 yrs or so.

  7. azarkhan - Aug 19, 2014 at 1:32 PM

    In the Eastern Conference, everyone has a shot.

    • sportsfan18 - Aug 19, 2014 at 3:35 PM

      Almost… just need a little tweak to make it right…

      Everyone in the East has a shot, except for the Knicks…

      Now it’s accurate.

  8. booboo31 - Aug 19, 2014 at 3:17 PM

    It’s the east melo…making playoffs isn’t anything to be bold about.

  9. saint1997 - Aug 19, 2014 at 5:35 PM

    You forgot Charlotte, they’re a guaranteed top 5 seed with Chicago Cleveland Toronto and Washington. Aside from that yes Miami will make the playoff, but don’t have BK on that list. They’ve gotten worse and they’re prone to injury, I think they and the Pacers will miss the playoffs for sure

  10. jcampol - Aug 19, 2014 at 5:40 PM

    sportsfan18
    So you think going back and looking at the Knicks records from 14 years ago paints a better picture as to what the Knicks will be next year? Rather than say that 3 of the last 4 years they have been over .500? The teams from 2002,3,4,5,6 etc in no way resemble what the team is today. I’m not saying they are winning the championship but they are closer to regaining the form of 2 years ago than you are giving them credit for.

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