Commentary

Debate: Knicks have NBA title core?

Our Insiders debate whether or not the two Knicks stars are championship-caliber

Updated: March 10, 2011, 1:46 PM ET
By Chris Broussard and Ric Bucher | ESPN The Magazine
Carmelo AnthonyJoe Murphy/Getty ImagesMelo and Stoudemire are stars individually, but are they good enough to make a title run?

The only thing Ric Bucher and Chris Broussard like to do more than report on the NBA is argue about the NBA. So we decided to combine those two skills for Insider's weekly One-on-One series, in which they'll debate the hottest topics in the association.

Question: Are Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony good enough for the New York Knicks to build around?

BROUSSARD: While we all can agree that Magic Johnson got ahead of himself with his "New York Knicks title" tweet, I do believe that Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony can be the nucleus of a championship team. If the Knicks build around them correctly, they could definitely lead New York to a title.

BUCHER: For the sake of Knicks fans and Amare and Melo, I wish I could be as optimistic. But there are two principles that apply to every championship team I've seen: One, its top two players can dominate the game at both ends of the floor. Two, it has had, at most, one subpar defender in its finishing lineup. With that in mind, I don't see how the Knicks construct a team around Amare and Melo that meets those criteria.

Ric Bucher

NBA Reporter, ESPN The Magazine Senior Writer