Melo on Heat: 'We can't run from them'

Carmelo Anthony (34 points) led the Knicks to their second win streak of the season Tuesday at MSG. Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE/Getty Images

NEW YORK –- Carmelo Anthony had just helped the New York Knicks squeeze by the Detroit Pistons when asked about playing the Miami Heat next.

“That’s who we play next?” Anthony asked. “Honestly, I did not know. We've got to face them someway, somehow. One day or the other. When do we play? Thursday?"

The Knicks, winners of three of their past four games, now get to test their newfound mojo against the defending champs at the Garden on Thursday. Anthony did appear to be honestly surprised about the Knicks’ next opponent.

“We've got to face them,” Anthony said. “It is what it is. We can't run from them. I think we're getting better each day.”

Anthony needed to focus all his energy on Detroit and not look ahead. He will face LeBron James and the Heat for the first time this season coming off a 34-point outing against Detroit. The Knicks needed every single point. Anthony buried 6 of 7 3-pointers to lift New York to the win. He scored 20 of his points in the second half and drilled three consecutive 3s at one point to give the Knicks a much-needed 15-point lead going into the fourth quarter. They required every bit of that cushion down the stretch to hang on at the end.

Anthony will need to have a hot hand again on Thursday. The Knicks also hope to have Tyson Chandler, who did not play Tuesday due to an upper respiratory infection.

“Them guys are playing well,” Anthony said of Miami. “We've got to lace our sneakers up like they do come Thursday.”