It might be a small sample size, but the New York Knicks are the NBA's best team.
After the San Antonio Spurs and Milwaukee Bucks lost their Wednesday night games, only one team in the league has failed to lose any of its early games, and that team is New York. It's not the result of a weak schedule - their first game came against the currently 4-1 Miami Heat, and was a veritable blowout as the Knicks won by 20, and their next two came against the possibly playoff-bound Philadelphia 76ers. It's the result of great defense - the team is allowing a league-best 85.3 points per game - and great shooting - the Knicks are hitting 45.3 percent of their threes, and the 43 three-pointers they connected on in their first three games is a league record. The team is getting open looks off of beautiful ball movement, and has the shooters to knock down the opening looks. Carmelo Anthony deserves a large part of the credit, as he's looked engaged on defense and has scored at will against single coverage and swung the ball out of double teams to lead to open looks for teammates.
That said, it's just three games, but it's a great start for the Knicks. The team will have to hope their veteran bench stays healthy for the entire season, and the team will have to find a way to integrate another superstar in Amar'e Stoudemire when he returns in a few months.
Brooklyn's first week as hosts to an NBA team started out well when the team beat Toronto, 107-00, but since the Nets have blown a 22-point third quarter lead in a loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves and lost by 30 to the Miami Heat. The team's core of stars has played well in the early going, but they'll need Gerald Wallace back from a sprained ankle, and will also need Deron Williams to stop turning the ball over five times a game.
Here's a full look at the Eastern Conference standings, with New York at the top.
|New York Knicks||3||3-0||1.000|