Anyone that’s watched Carmelo Anthony over his career knows that he doesn’t really like-like defense, but this sequence against the Sacramento Kings is even substandard for ‘Mellow’s usual lazy effort.
I would have gladly used another word instead of “effort” but Carmelo did run for 3.5 steps before finally giving up. I guess that counts for something.
Carmelo is the kind of player you hate playing with at the playground or local Y. No matter how talented they are or how many games you win with said player, it’s no fun watching him shoot (whether it’s made or missed) and definitely not fun watch him trotting back on defense — if he trots back at all.
Let’s go over the Zapruder Vine: Rudy Gay intercepts a Jose Calderon pass. As Gay heads down court, ‘Melo is the closest to getting back, so he instinctively turns to defend Rudy Gay. Actually, when the turnover occurs, Carmelo is actually in front of Gay.
Melo’s three steps looks as if he is going to contest Gay on the fastbreak, but after hitting the gas, Anthony’s car mellows. He clearly said “forget it” as his run puttered to a walk. As Carmelo reached the free throw line, Gay is already up in the air about to dunk the ball. Carmelo Anthony is good 5-7 feet behind Gay and the Knicks were another two points behind the Kings, 28-16.
Those two points would matter. The Knicks would mount a comeback in the second-half and tie the game. The game would go into overtime that the Knicks would end up losing. If all things remained the same, those two points that Anthony gave up cost the Knicks a much-needed victory.
Not that Anthony’s poor attempt needs any more salt on the wound for Knicks fans, but the Knick’s Shane Larkin caught up and surpassed his teammate after starting out behind both Anthony and Gay.
Pathetic. Even after a reported team meeting earlier this month that called out the Knick’s star for playing defense only when he feels like it. The Knicks have a very small chance of a NBA championship with Carmelo Anthony as their lead player.
Here’s another take on Carmelo’s poor defense (Interbasket)