GREENBURGH, N.Y. - Carmelo Anthony returned to the Knicks a little slimmer and committed to show Phil Jackson and Derek Fisher he is embracing their system and their plan. Anthony also said the Knicks will be much better than last season's 37-win team.
Anthony sounds supremely confident in himself, the new regime and said there is a completely different feeling around the Knicks than in years past.
"We don't want to go down that lane no more, we don't want to feel that pain again," Anthony said during Knicks media day on Monday. "There's a new level of focus now. I saw that this offseason and I saw that the past couple of weeks coming here, training with the guys. You can see the mindset is a lot different than everything else.
"Every time you have a new coach, a new energy comes along with that. You can just walk around the building and feel that energy. In the offseason I felt that energy. You could just see that everybody is rejuvenated again, everybody wants to win, everybody wants to do what's right to help this team be successful. At the end of the day I believe that we will be there at the end. We have a lot of work to do. But if we're all in this together I believe we will be there."
"There" is the playoffs, which the Knicks missed last season, thanks to a disappointing 37-45 record. But they have undergone a facelift. They have seven new players, yet the biggest changes are at president and coach.
Jackson and Fisher have won 18 championships between them, five of which came together with the Lakers using the triangle system. The Knicks will use that, which will require Anthony to be a more willing passer. But he says he's going to do what's asked of him.
"I think this new situation, new system will, I think it's going to enhance my game, it's going to enhance my teammates' game and as a whole we're going to be successful," Anthony said. "My thing is I want to embrace what Phil and Derek are doing. I want them to know that I'm in, I'm embracing this challenge.
"I know from being a student of the game and watching and knowing the history that it will work. It takes time, nothing happens overnight but it will work. As long as I'm patient with that, then everything else is irrelevant."