I understand critics will downplay the performance based on the fact that it was “an exhibition” and the style of play “wasn’t Woodson’s” but, hey, Melo was pretty darn good yesterday. Still, that can’t stop the media from calling him out.
Anthony was right: He did come out of those Games and have a tremendous 2008-09 season. Still, the arrival of Chauncey Billups in Denver played an immense part in elevating Anthony and the Nuggets. Billups took over the team’s leadership, which Anthony desperately needed to happen.
Now, Anthony has to be that player with the Knicks, and he’s never proven that he can do the job. He’s equipped to score points in New York, but lead and win? That’s different. He had the chance for a beautiful partnership with Jeremy Lin, and it all fell apart with the Houston Rockets’ offer sheet. Because Anthony never wanted Lin, it was probably forever doomed anyway. Lin’s indoctrination to ‘Melo would come watching him ignore the coach’s wishes and running whatever he wanted to run. Anthony and J.R. Smith resented Lin’s attention, his salary, and convinced themselves that Raymond Felton and Jason Kidd can replicate what Lin had going with the Knicks. The rest of the Knicks’ roster loved Lin, wanted him, but Anthony and Smith never had the chance to build a chemistry with him.
I’m sorry, but this is selective memory and it’s also 4 years ago. Melo was 23. He’s a different player now and his leadership is about to come into question, but it’s also about to come into form. One has nothing to do with the other and Billups had won a title at the point guard position. He was their leader, but Melo was their anchor.
And another thing. He’s been selfLESS in this Olympic go-round having been asked to play the 5 at times. Haven’t heard him complain once.
Yesterday, he was the best player on the floor in a game that had incredible talent.
Over the past few months Twitter has been a haven for hate towards Anthony peaking when the Knicks (not Melo) decided not to match the offer sheet for Jeremy Lin.
Yesterday, in the midst of a ridiculously efficient performance on the world’s stage, Twitter was eerily silent, I noticed, from the Knicks fan perspective. Those who have been upset with Carmelo didn’t give him an ounce of credit.
I found that a bit odd. I mean, if Patrick Ewing had a dominant performance in 1992 for the Dream Team Knicks fans would have been very proud.
Looks like Melo has a long uphill battle with the fans in terms of getting proper support. Same can be said with the media apparently.