New York Knicks forwards Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire are second and third among Eastern Conference forwards, respectively, after the first returns of 2012 NBA All-Star balloting, which the NBA announced on Thursday.
Anthony received 496,351 votes, trailing only Lebron James (640,789) among forwards in the East. Stoudemire is immediately behind Anthony with 178,797 votes. Tyson Chandler is third among East centers with 61,774 votes.
Dwight Howard is the overall leader with 754,737 votes, followed by Kobe Bryant (690,613), James, Derrick Rose (640,476) and Dwyane Wade (637,912).
Anthony and Stoudemire together have paced the Knicks' 6-4 start. New York has used a four-game winning streak to climb within one game of the Atlantic Division-leading Philadelphia 76ers in the Eastern Conference standings, relying heavily on the contributions of the superstar duo.
Anthony is averaging 26.6 points, 6.4 rebounds and 4.5 assists, while Stoudemire adds 20.9 points and 9.0 rebounds. The power forward has yet to find his offensive touch, shooting what would easily be a career-low of 43.4 percent from the field, but is still managing to help New York win games.
Voting will continue until Jan. 31, and the 2012 All-Star Game will be played in Orlando on Sunday, Feb. 26.