Carmelo Anthony doesn’t need Rajon Rondo on his side — just to trust his teammates more. Rondo is coming to the Garden today … in a suit and as a rehabbing member of the Celtics. After winning their last two games by a combined 68 points, the Knicks no longer look as if they desperately need Rondo as savior. They have their mojo back and finally appear a happier, locked-in unit, aiming to overtake the Celtics for first place in the awful Atlantic Division. Anthony, who privately has pined for Rondo since July, is trusting his teammates and finding a new niche as chief distributor. “Mad-at-the-world” Iman Shumpert is playing with past ferociousness. Point guard Raymond Felton’s pinched nerve is easing and allowing him to push the pace. J.R. Smith has relocated his 3-point shot. And Andrea Bargnani continues as an able center replacement for injured Tyson Chandler. Chandler is expected back within 10 days — on pace to return by the late end of a 4-6-week timetable. He was their best player before breaking his leg in the season’s fourth game. The Knicks also may re-sign Jeremy Tyler in about a week as he shakes off rust in the D-League. The Knicks look to be emerging from that “dark space’’ Anthony cryptically talked of amid the catastrophic 0-4 Thanksgiving week road trip, causing Anthony’s friends to wonder if he will re-sign. “Everyone had to get used to each other, and now we are back at it,’’ Felton said. “I knew it was eventually going to happen.” And it all starts with their disgruntled superstar. Anthony had taken it upon himself to dominate the offense every game once Chandler went down. It backfired and players resented it. Amar’e Stoudemire and Shumpert complained publicly about “a lack of ball movement.’’ During the three-day break after Sunday’s New Orleans loss, a desperate coaching staff got Anthony to re-examine, make his teammates better, trust them and contribute more in the way of intangibles. He obliged.
The Knicks are back on track
New York Post | Dec 8