Wednesday, 13 November, 2019

Carmelo Anthony Returns to New York Tonight

Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports
Shannon Reynolds | 17 December, 2017, 00:23

After playing 47 minutes, how much can he possibly have left in the tank against his former teammates?

"At the end of the day, it's business to me", Anthony said.

Anthony was joking of course. This is something no fan would have believed leading into the season.

So while the message from Porzingis is thoughtful, very little likely could quell the reception Melo is bound to get Saturday. "I felt my knee just kind of buckle maybe a little bit and I felt a little pain there", the 22-year-old from Latvia said. I spent a lot of time there. "Hopefully they recognize that".

Anthony spent seven seasons in NY, and during that time he experienced his fair share of ups and downs.

"He's Embiid, helluva talent, I just love his competitive spirit, " Anthony said. Those are my roots. "I've embraced New York City, I embraced the culture, embraced everything about the city, so yeah, definitely". I'm focused on Oklahoma City right now. "I embraced everything about that city". With a list narrowed down to only a few teams, Anthony waived his no-trade clause to accept a deal to the Thunder. In fact, it was his highest scoring game since he put up 28 against Denver on November 9. In 7 seasons with the Knicks, Anthony averaged 24.7 points and 7 rebounds while shooting 44 percent from the floor.

But Westbrook missed two driving dunks in the fourth quarter that would have sealed the win.

"When KP went out, Mike really stepped up there for that stretch and got us buckets", Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek said. In the locker room they seem to have a good rapport.

"Hey, I'm only 33, " Anthony said.

"For the most part what I like about it, guys are trying to figure it out", he said earlier this week.

All this goes to say, the reaction he receives from the crowd on Saturday night will probably be mixed.

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If New York is going to defeat Oklahoma City, it will need all hands on deck.

And after placing him with MVP Russell Westbrook and fellow All-Star Paul George for the NBA's latest Big Three, the Thunder were under.500 before Friday's victory. With Friday's win, Oklahoma City improved to 14-14. It's offensively where OKC has struggled. But the organization, particularly under Phil Jackson, didn't make anything easier. Not because of the quality of players, but how they fit into each teams roster. These Knicks make the extra pass and move without the ball. "But you never know".

Kristaps Porzingis, when healthy, is clearly comfortable as the Alpha dog.

Anthony was traded two days before training camp opened for Enes Kanter, Doug McDermott and the Bulls' second-round pick. Eight weeks into the season, it looks like the Knicks may have won this trade.

Scott Perry walked into a messy situation and by the time he arrived, the Jackson damage to Melo's stance with the Knicks was already done.

Though Anthony left NY in unfavourable conditions, the star forward believes he still shares a bond with fervent basketball fans in the Big Apple. Jackson alternated between trying to win and trying to rebuild seemingly every season, and his insistence on running the triangle offense appeared out of touch in an era when National Basketball Association teams are pushing the pace. "Whether it was the style that some fans wanted or didn't want, he competed night in and night out".

His exit didn't set back the Knicks.

Porzingis appears to be the superstar that NY has been searching for since Patrick Ewing was traded in 2000.

After escaping Philadelphia with a triple overtime win Saturday, the Thunder flew to NY overnight to prepare for the Knicks. Had the Knicks waited until the summer of 2011, they could have signed Anthony as a free agent.

The boos that are sure to rain down at Madison Square Garden will, deep down, come from memories of watching the team's centerpiece play lackluster defense, and chuck up questionable iso-ball shots more than anything else.

"I think it will be more cheers than anything, man". I want to win because we have a chance to sweep this road trip. "It will be fun to be back in the Garden".

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