I suspect like many of you, I’ve been keeping as close an eye on the New York Knicks since they acquired Carmelo Anthony and Chauncey Billups as I do on our Denver Nuggets. How long will this go on for?

Even though Carmelo Anthony and Chauncey Billups now wear Knick jerseys, I can't help but follow their careers closely. Since "the trade" that went down on February 21st, I've been regularly watching the Knicks play and keeping up with their box scores in real time on my mobile phone.

And, I must confess, I like it when the Knicks lose…even though losing is no good for Billups, whom I can't openly root against.

But it hasn’t gone unnoticed here or elsewhere in Nuggets Nation that the Nuggets are 7-2 since Melo’s departure whereas the Knicks are 6-5 with Melo. That fifth (and most recent) Knicks’ loss coming Sunday in embarrassing fashion as the hands of the lowly Indiana Pacers. A game during which former Nugget Dahntay Jones posted a near season-high 18 points on his former teammate Melo, all while forcing Melo into a five personal fouls/five turnovers game. Melo would finish the game with a +/- of -19 compared to Jones’ +14. Meanwhile, Melo was unable to help new teammate Amar’e Stoudemire defensively as the two “superstars” allowed Tyler Hansbrough to go off for a career-high 29 points.

It’s hard to resist from reveling in the Knicks ongoing struggle to find an identity while the new-look Nuggets have clearly found theirs. But as I’ve said before, let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. Even though the Nuggets organization masterfully navigated the end of the Melodrama much to the benefit of the franchise’s future, the team remains in a dogfight with the Hornets (Monday night’s opponent) and the Trail Blazers for playoff seeding. As good as our Nuggets are playing, it’s still best to avoid the Lakers, Spurs and Mavericks in the playoffs’ first round at all costs.

So while it sure is fun to watch the Knicks stumble and bumble with their newfound lineup, I don't want to get too cocky about ours. At least, not until we finish with a higher playoff seeding than they do!

Monday Links…

Chauncey Billups ineffective in New York Knicks’ 106-93 loss to Indiana Pacers at the Garden Sunday
It was hard not to feel bad for the Madison Square Garden customers who paid top dollar to witness this. Whatever happened to the team that defeated the Miami Heat two weeks ago? The Knicks suffered a setback in every way imaginable Sunday night as the Indiana Pacers, behind former college stud Tyler Hansough, cruised to a 106-93 victory.

Carmelo Anthony sank the game-winning shot against Memphis, then yelled 'I do this' – ESPN New York
Chris Sheridan brags about Carmelo Anthony…and then the Knicks lose two straight.

Hochman: Andersen back being Birdman – The Denver Post
Benjamin Hochman writes about Chris Andersen‘s recent resurgence as a player.

Krieger: Nuggets’ “junk” a treasure trove of “D” – The Denver Post
Alvin Gentry accuses George Karl of “junking up the game” and Dave Krieger compares what Karl is doing with today’s Nuggets to some of his previous successful Supersonics teams in Seattle.

Serby's Sunday Q & A with … Chauncey Billups – NYPOST.com
The Post's Steve Serby chats with the 34-year-old point guard who came to the Knicks in the Carmelo Anthony trade. 

NUGGETS: Confident Nuggets hit the road for difficult four-game trip
Aaron Lopez catches up with our Nuggets before they take off for their toughest stretch of road games in some time.

Weekend Dime: What NBA scouts say – ESPN
Marc Stein gets six scouts to give their candid views on key issues at season's quarter pole.