One of the biggest question marks exiting the London games: Will Carmelo Anthony be able to lead New York next season? Before the quarterfinals, Anthony’s plus-minus rating ranked third lowest on the team. The Knicks star certainly tried to leave a positive offensive mark on the games; his two- and three-point field goal attempts were second highest on the roster. But while Melo had his offensive outbursts (the Tunisia match, for instance), his efficiency was underwhelming. He did connect on 57 percent of his twos and 50 percent of his threes, but only registered ten assists during the eight games, a shockingly low figure for someone who played nearly 150 minutes during the tournament.
Tommy Dee, theKnicksBlog.comThis is what bothers me most about advanced stats. And I mean REALLY bothers me.
Melo is not Lebron James and this is not breaking news. Before Lebron won a title, he wasn’t Carmelo Anthony in closing games.
Had you watched the Olympic games you would have realized that Melo was playing the 4 and sometimes 5 position in a spread offense. While Melo’s assist numbers were admittedly low, they didn’t run any offense through him, instead putting him in perimeter positions to catch and shoot. And how on earth can you nit pick efficiency when he shot 57% from the field and 50% from 3? That’s incredibly efficient in terms of shooting the ball. And moreover he’s not a drive and kick player off the dribble in a spread offense. He can do it, but it’s not his game.
Experts whined and complained that USA shot too many threes and most all of those came off of pick and roll and drive and kick. Not off post entry, forcing double and kicking skip passes. Melo did have a very clutch assist to Kevin Durant in the gold medal game, a dagger that put the game out of reach.
Yes, the questions are there and the anti-Melo media will continue to point to advanced stats as the reason why he’s not a superstar. Melo played tremendous basketball on both sides in my opinion, selflessly defending the post despite giving up a huge size advantage. He struggled knocking down big shots at the end of yesterday’s game and obviously isn’t a penetrate, draw and kick type of player. He never has been. That job was left up to Lebron, Paul, Williams, and Westbrook. Melo, Love, Iggy and of course Kobe and Durant were instructed to read penetration and find spots.
This one is particularly weak to those who studied the actual games, not the numbers after. And speaking of which forget Melo’s key baskets in the second and third quarters, did anyone notice what Team USA did when the were on the ropes and needed critical baskets?
Iso Kobe in the post.
Melo isn’t Lebron and it’s unfair to treat him that way. But the media isn’t built to be fair. Melo is in for it this year, I just hope people can recognize great play when it happens.