Some numbers. Look at them. LOOK AT THEM.
Hello! I have no point to make here, but some of us last night were discussing the performance of lineups including Amar'e Stoudemire alongside Tyson Chandler and/or Carmelo Anthony. Since Amar'e's questionable ability to fit with either or both of those guys has been something of a meme for a while now, I figured I'd pull up some numbers.
Bear in mind that Amar'e has played 13 games this season. 290 total minutes. These are small samples. Anyway, here are a few numbers to sniff:
- According to NBA.com, these Knicks have posted overall efficiency numbers of 108.6 points per 100 possessions on offense and 103.2 points per 100 possessions on defense. (Basketball-reference numbers are slightly higher, probably because they count possessions differently, but the numbers below are from NBA.com so we'll use the above as a baseline).
- Lineups including Amar'e Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony, and Tyson Chandler have played 108 minutes:
A cursory look at the more detailed numbers reveals that those lineups have rebounded pretty well, significantly limited opponent three-point percentage (22.9 percent), and both drawn and committed a lot of fouls.
Last year, lineups including those three posted efficiency numbers of 98.5/100.3 relative to 101.4/98.4 for the Knicks overall. So in short, Amar'e-Tyson-Melo lineups this season have improved the offense significantly and maintained the Knick standard (mediocrity) defensively. Last year, those groups hurt a very good defense and further hurt a mediocre offense.
- Lineups including Amar'e and Chandler (with or without Melo): 134 minutes, 110.6 O-rating/100.7 D-rating.
- Lineups including Amar'e and Melo (with or without Chandler): 208 minutes, 107.2 O-rating/110.2 D-rating.
So, all three have performed pretty well, but if you had to pick two, Amar'e and Chandler would be the two, yes? Also, just going off a quick run through five-man lineup data, the few lineups including Amar'e and neither Chandler nor Melo have some absurdly low defensive ratings. Those add up to like 35-40 minutes, though. Amar'e has mostly played with at least one of his co-stars.
On a somewhat related note, check out these changes in Amar'e's possession allocation (via mySynergySports.com) from last season to this season:
Post-ups: 10.4% of possessions last season (0.77 points per possession) -> 30.7% this season (1.04 PPP)
Pick-and-roll man: 13% (1.22 PPP) -> 19.6% (1.07)
Cuts: 12.6% (0.65 PPP) -> 18.3% (1.11)
Isolation: 19.9% (0.65 PPP) -> 4.6% (1.43)
Amar'e's run seven total plays classified bys Synergy as "isolation" in his 13 games. He's facing up and going iso way less frequently so far this year, leaning more heavily on pick-and-roll and off-ball cuts, and waaaay more heavily on post-ups to get his touches (and that 1.04 PPP on post-ups would rank in the league's top ten). Just going off what I can remember, I'd say he's setting most of the screens with Chandler off the floor and making most of those cuts with Chandler on it. Right?
Again: Thirteen games, 290 total minutes. Not much of a sample. Do with this information what you will.