Knicks must 'walk the walk'

New York can challenge Miami, but must find better cohesion in season ahead

Updated: September 21, 2012, 3:07 PM ET
By Chris Broussard | ESPN the Magazine
Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo AnthonyAl Bello/Getty ImagesWith more time together, Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony might find better chemistry.

The Knicks talked the talk this summer.

Carmelo Anthony, claiming to be motivated by watching buddy LeBron James win a title, said his time to do the same "is coming."

Amare Stoudemire said "anything less than a championship is a waste of a season."

And J.R. Smith, the club's mercurial shooting guard, said Knicks fans can expect "a championship" this season.

Of course, Baron Davis, speaking boldly of "banners" and "X factors," predicted a Knicks title last season; then promptly went out and averaged six points a game.

So we're not putting a ton of stock in the Knicks' big, bad words. Though I won't go as far as Stephon Marbury, who recently said the Knicks' 'Melo-Amare pairing will never work. In an interesting bit of irony, during the Knicks' very public, months-long courting of Anthony during the 2010-11 season, one of Marbury's former teammates told me the Knicks should avoid 'Melo at all costs because he's "a 6-foot-8 Marbury."

Anyway, I will give these Knicks one thing. Unlike last year's crew, they are putting substance behind their tough talk. At least so far.