Carmelo thriving in isolation

The Knicks have relied heavily on Carmelo Anthony with Amare Stoudemire and Jeremy Lin out -- and he's responded.

Anthony's scored 29.9 points on 49 percent shooting over the past seven games (39 percent from beyond the arc) -- a significant increase from his season averages of 21 points per game on 41 percent shooting.

Of course, it's only natural for Anthony's numbers to increase with Lin and Stoudemire out.

But there's another factor at play: Mike Woodson is using Anthony in isolation much more frequently with Stoudemire and Lin on the sideline.

In the past seven games, Anthony's gotten the ball in isolation for an average of 13.1 plays per game, according to ESPN Stats & Information. In the 17 prior to that (10 of which were coached by Mike D'Antoni), Anthony got only 4.2 plays per game in isolation.

In the past seven games, he's scored 13.6 points per game on 46 percent shooting in isolation. In the 17 before that, he was scoring 3.4 points per game on 31 percent shooting. The difference in points per game is expected. But his shooting percentage increase is indicative of Anthony's effectiveness of late.

And a more telling stat is this: in the past seven games, he's averaging 1.03 points per play in isolation. In the previous 17, he was scoring 0.79 per play.

Thanks to ESPN Stats & Information for the statistics.

You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.