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Carmelo Anthony says there’s no pressure on Andrea Bargnani because it’s all on him

Oct 1, 2013, 7:31 PM EDT

New York Knicks' Anthony reacts after scoring against Miami Heat during their NBA basketball game in Miami Reuters

When the Raptors traded away Andrea Bargnani to the Knicks this summer, the team not only rid themselves of a large contract that would hinder their rebuilding project, but they successfully performed an exorcism of sorts of a demon that’s haunted the team since 2006.

Bargnani never lived up to being the number one overall pick in the draft, from either a talent or a leadership standpoint. And with injuries limiting his ability to contribute over the past two seasons, he became the face of failure for a franchise that has finished out of the playoffs for the last five years.

Dealing Bargnani gave Toronto a fresh start, but it also meant that a player who has historically not performed well under pressure was suddenly thrust into the top media market in the U.S., and one that isn’t exactly known for extending patience or kindness to underperforming professional athletes.

But Bargnani is far from the main man in New York; that’s Carmelo Anthony‘s role. And Anthony says that there can’t possibly be any pressure on his new teammate, because for the most part, it all falls on his shoulders.

From Marc Berman of the New York Post:

“There ain’t no pressure on him,’’ Anthony said. “You come in and do what you got to do and play ball. All the pressure’s on me. It should be easy for him. It should be an easy transition for him, adjusting. Just do it the right way, it should be easy for him.’’

Anthony’s right to a certain extent, in that the Knicks will go largely as he goes. But there is one area where Bargnani could potentially receive a ton of criticism.

In this very same report, Anthony says he’d be fine sliding over to the three (small forward) position to play alongside Bargnani. The only problem is that Anthony has proven to be a far better player at the four (power forward) spot, which unintentionally puts plenty of pressure on Bargnani to produce when they’re on the floor together — especially if we see a dip in Anthony’s production.

  1. antistratfordian - Oct 1, 2013 at 7:42 PM

    No doubt about it, Melo. Embrace it. Want it. Own it.

    But each player lives in their own little egosystem – so Bargs will still feel the burden.

  2. dysraw1 - Oct 1, 2013 at 8:55 PM

    the responsibility is on management to put the best available players on the floor, i think Melo should stay in the trust my teammates mode. who knows how AB. will pan out, but kinda got a bad rep. coming out of Canada. and should be a anxious to turn that around

  3. bhunter1995 - Oct 1, 2013 at 9:34 PM

    It doesnt matter, the Knicks are not contenders. They still wont beat the Pacers or the Heat and they probably wont be able to beat the Nets either. For Melo to win a ring he will need a dominating post prescence on his team, a guy who can score one on one in the post and a guy who can defend in the post. Someone like Andrew Bynum (while healthy of course). Without that dominating post player Melo will nevet win. He is an iso street baller on steroids when it come down to it and if the opposition has a good one on one defender of melo’s size (ex Paul George and LBJ) then they will get as hut down. It doesnt matter how many floor spacers they have to facilitate Melo’s iso. If they have no offensive post prescence they wont win against a team like IND or the Heat.

  4. 00maltliquor - Oct 2, 2013 at 12:01 AM

    Yeah he got some faults, but I feel Bargnani gets takes way too much unfair criticism.

  5. misterdreamer119 - Oct 2, 2013 at 1:31 AM

    anotherwords, kicks get bounced 2nd round.

  6. jzone954 - Oct 2, 2013 at 11:14 AM

    Be interesting to see what Melo does come free agency.

  7. bux1022 - Oct 2, 2013 at 12:46 PM

    Um sign a max deal to stay in my city!!!

  8. bux1022 - Oct 2, 2013 at 12:46 PM

    Um sign a max deal to stay in my city!!!

    • bigzant82 - Oct 2, 2013 at 2:38 PM

      my gut tell me melo goes too LA after kobe leaves

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