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Knicks 102, Hornets 80: Carmelo Anthony breaks bad

Nov 20, 2012, 11:04 PM EST

New York Knicks Introduce Carmelo Anthony Getty Images

Carmelo Anthony is on a sort of “basketball diet.” After years of not maximizing his full potential, Anthony has shown great restraint against the temptations of chucking this season, and as a result, he looks the best he ever has. He’s motivated. He has the desire to defend. He’s taking only what he needs and dispersing what’s leftover elsewhere. It’s a healthy, steady diet, and it’s one that has led the Knicks to the league’s best record to start the season. Anthony trending away from his gluttonous appetite for isolation jumpers has been the most notable change in the Knicks this year, and it’s had a positive effect on the rest of their roster.

This diet is working…but.that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t treat yourself every now and then.

Carmelo Anthony is human, and he’s been so good that Knicks fans shouldn’t mind that he reverted back to old Melo tonight, the one who fires up heat checks with 18 seconds on the shot clock. So he had a few spoons of ice cream that turned into a bowl that turned into the whole carton. We’ve all been there, and you know what? It’s okay.

It’s okay because Anthony’s scoring binge (12-for-22, 29 points in 28 minutes) was well deserved. Anthony has been so good that you’re almost glad he rewarded himself for his efforts. Against a Hornets team without Anthony Davis (ankle), Eric Gordon, or a prayer, it’s almost like Anthony decided right from the start that this was his game. Put in the work, reap the benefits. Once those first few shots fell, there was no going back and denying Melo from packing on the points. It was the right opponent at the right time, which gives hope that shot “selection” is really a choice that Anthony can now control. The Hornets put up about as much resistance as the lid on the ice cream carton does, so that helped too, but Anthony got his, got some rest, and got his team another win.

In a 102-80 blowout, the rest of the Knicks displayed a familiar formula of 3-point shooting and ball control. The Knicks knocked down 14 3-pointers on the evening and killed the Hornets with skip passes to open shooters in the corner time and time again. Even with the entire fourth quarter consisting of garbage time, the Knicks remained on pace to set the NBA record for the least amount of turnovers per game over the course of a season, which is incredible given their roster composition and their style of play.

Yes, there is a lot of season left ahead of the Knicks. 73 games is an eternity. But for now, it’s hard to deny that the Knicks are shaping up into something great, even when their star occasionally breaks bad.

  1. hwatt - Nov 20, 2012 at 11:08 PM

    “. So he had a few spoons of ice cream that turned into a bowl that turned into the whole carton. We’ve all been there, and you know what? It’s okay.”

    oh, see, that right there? Now that’s some good bloggin’

  2. jaredo10 - Nov 20, 2012 at 11:13 PM

    go NY go NY go

  3. badintent - Nov 20, 2012 at 11:24 PM

    Woodsen should get some early consideration for Coach of the Year.He got the guys to buy into his system and got them to play defense. And we talking about JR and Melo.Kidd has show solid leadership as a part time player and Sheed is his bookend for that.
    Hurricane Sandy brought wind and rain, IT’s still raining, raining 3s all night long. !!
    Bring on Brooklyn for the EAST Finals.It’s like the Yankees and the Dodgers in the 50s !!
    Stubhub prices gone Wall Street gazillons.

    • nokoolaidcowboy - Nov 21, 2012 at 5:02 AM

      Come on, Coach of the Year? If the Knicks have a terrible season this start will be forgotten. Let’s just remember the story of the Old Bull and Young Bull sitting on top of the hill.

      Let’s just let these Knicks quietly continue to do their thing. Good reading this stuff about Anthony, good stuff.

      • badintent - Nov 21, 2012 at 3:40 PM

        Numbers don’t lie. Knicks since Woodsen took over last year have dropped the D-line from over 103/game to down in the nano range. They got D numbers like the Heat had last year. Knicks will go through shooting slumps like all teams, but their D will help them get through the long road trips out West late in the season.
        Yes, you’re right , having Chandler in the middle is reason #1 but he was getting it done before Woodsen took over and the Knicks were a still a terrible D team.Woodsen ‘s program is the difference right now.Custer dealt with Sitting Bull , got smoked .

  4. dysraw1 - Nov 20, 2012 at 11:32 PM

    he was like 7 for 7 coming out guess that would make most players a little trigger happy

  5. yousuxxors - Nov 20, 2012 at 11:46 PM

    Kidd looks so bad in a headband

  6. 00maltliquor - Nov 21, 2012 at 2:34 AM

    Where’s everyone that thumbed me down and mocked me when I called out this team before pre-season when they signed/traded for all their “dinosaurs” at now!? Told you this team would be the ish! Me, money2long, and like one or two other dudes were the only ones who saw the potential.

    • saint1997 - Nov 21, 2012 at 6:13 AM

      I WAS ONE OF THE GUYS :)

    • huffdaddyco - Nov 21, 2012 at 8:36 AM

      Not saying they won’t have a good season, but the “dinosaurs” are only 9 games in so let’s see how they are hanging together towards the end of the season before you proclaim them “the ish”.

    • badintent - Nov 21, 2012 at 3:42 PM

      Me2 !

    • dysraw1 - Nov 21, 2012 at 9:14 PM

      after seeing b diddy rolling on in pain i have to admit i was little scared with the signing of our relics, save for J Kidd,

  7. lawrinson20 - Nov 21, 2012 at 4:56 AM

    “After years of not maximizing his full potential”
    — rather unfair. Far too much scrutiny, simply because he came into the league at the same time as Lebron.

    He won an NCAA national championship. He made Denver relevant and playoff-expected. When George Gervin and Bernard King were prolific scorers, people appreciated them for what they DID do. In the era where everyone has a blog, and everyone needs a ‘critical point of view,’ it’s easy to single out one player and crucify him for not being the same as the best player in the league. Thing is, concurrent with Anthony is a guy named Dirk. He plays no defense. It’s never mentioned. Steve Nash. No defense — his other qualities are lauded.

    Time to put things into perspective. Most good players are continually developing and evolving. Kobe did it. Michael did it. Pierce…. Carmelo’s no different. It’s just too easy to jump on the negative hype bandwagon without actually looking and thinking independently.

    • borderline1988 - Nov 21, 2012 at 9:06 AM

      Steve Nash and Nowitzki brought other things to the table, even if they did suck at defense. Nash can make average players like Shawn Marion look incredible. He is perhaps the greatest passer the game has ever seen, and his court vision is fantastic. He’s also one of the most efficient shooters in NBA history. There’s also outstanding leadership.

      Nowitzki really developed his game over the year, with an incredible ability to get the other team into foul trouble. He’s also become a much better passer, which gives him the ability to defeat double teams. That’s all besides his remarkable offensive game.

      Carmelo, on the other hand, was always a volume shooter. He simply loved isolations. That’s pretty much the only he thing he brought to the table. His efficiency was average, just he could score one-on-one. He was also streaky. If Carmelo was having an inefficient shooting night, he was a detriment to the team, b/c there’s not much else he would offer.

      Carmelo is playing much better this season, and I agree he is developing into a better player overall. But Nash and Nowitzki brought a lot more to the table, which is why they aren’t criticised as much. It’s not all about defense.

  8. abchome - Nov 21, 2012 at 5:47 AM

    I saw this version of Melo before. Four years ago in Denver aftering winning first Olympics gold, guided by a savvy leader Chauncey Billups. Now another Olympics gold and another veteran leader in Kidd. Focus, movtivation, maturity and talent, just watch out!

  9. 1972wasalongtimeago - Nov 21, 2012 at 9:10 AM

    The 1992 Cavaliers are looking good.

  10. southbeachtalent - Nov 21, 2012 at 9:14 AM

    I for one didn’t expect this from the Knicks, but here they are. Let’s see how it shakes down come April.

  11. pellypell - Nov 21, 2012 at 9:18 AM

    Some might say, “he’s Melo’d out”

    I’ll show myself out, sorry guys.

  12. justsayinginco - Nov 21, 2012 at 1:04 PM

    Bout damn time this man child started to play for a championship than just stats. I am disappointed it took him this long to realize he had to play 110% on both ends of the court and that there were 4 other teammates on the court the same time he is. Why would it take so long for him to realize this… especially after seeing Jordan and Kobe realize this earlier on in their careers? What a waste of the first 9 years of his career has been. Good luck to him I guess… time’s running out.

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