GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Carmelo Anthony has watched the Knicks from afar for the past three games.
And he isn't very impressed by what he's seen.
"We’re a little bit inconsistent as a whole, as a unit, as a group. The effort is definitely not there some days or it’s there and then sometimes it’s not," Anthony said after practice on Monday. "We play with effort in spurts. We’ve got to get some consistency from that standpoint."
The Knicks went 0-3 while Anthony was sidelined due to an ankle sprain.
At 9-21, they're five games back of the Raptors for the top spot in the Atlantic Division. New York is also four games out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
"This is not how I envisioned it, this is not how we envisioned it coming into this season," said Anthony, who will test free agency this summer. "But it is what it is at this point. We can’t be crying about it. We’ve got to find a solution to it, got to take it one game at a time and figure it out."
Anthony and other Knicks have cited a lack of effort after several losses this season. So effort was an issue while Anthony was on the court as well.
"We shouldn’t be talking about lack of effort and inconsistency," Anthony said. "But we are and we’ve got to find a solution to that. The solution is just to go out there and just do it. You can’t teach having energy on the court and having effort out there on the basketball court. It’s just got to happen."
Woody has no issue with Bargs: Mike Woodson said there's no reason to read too much into his benching of Andrea Bargnani on Saturday.
Woodson played Amar'e Stoudemire over Bargnani in the fourth quarter of Saturday's loss to the Raptors.
The Knicks cut a 21-point Toronto lead to six late in the fourth with Bargnani on the bench. Afterward, Woodson said he was going to play players who "played hard" for him.
It could have been a shot at Bargnani, who had just three rebounds in 18 minutes against the Raps. But Woodson shot that theory down on Monday.
"This has nothing to do with Bargnani," the coach said.
J.R. has the flu: J.R. Smith was limited to shooting jumpers in practice on Monday because of "flu-like symptoms," Woodson said. Smith will be available for Thursday's game against San Antonio, he said.
You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.