Carmelo Anthony

Melo joins CP3, Wade in a Dance Off During Jordan Tour

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kwpPBJ3rq8&feature=player_embedded]

Video has arisen of Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul and Dwayne Wade doing a dance off with some chinese children during their Jordan tour in China. I like seeing things like this in where professional athletes are giving back to some children. Granted these aren’t American children but still, I like to see stars giving back.

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Stoudemire Planning Off-Season Workouts

Last week at the Melo league versus Goodman league showdown, Carmelo Anthony provided us with an interesting quotation after the game:

““I’m trying to find Amar’e, man,” Anthony said, laughing. “If anybody’s seen Amar’e, just tell him. I don’t know where he’s at . . . I heard he’s in China, I heard he’s back. Maybe I’ll see him in New York next week for Fashion Week.”

Many Knick followers, myself included, cringed when he made these comments because the two cornerstones of the franchise need to be on the same page. Newsday has reported that Anthony was in fact joking and that the two Knick superstars have been in contact all off-season and that Stoudemire has in fact began to organize Knick workouts next month. According to un-named Knick players, Stoudemire has emailed all 10 Knicks under contract, a few free agents from last years team and both rookie draft picks about working out at the IMG basketball facility in Florida. Iman Shumpert, the teams first round selection has been working out at IMG all off-season. The workouts will take place from Oct. 19 – Nov. 3. Jerome Jordan likely will not be in attendance due to his contract with Slovenia and Ronny Turiaf has a broken finger so his status is unknown.

This is very refreshing to hear because I was very worried when Melo made those comments. The Knicks right now seem healthy enough to do a camp like this at full speed. Melo looked thinner and more muscular last week at the Melo league game and seems to be 100% healthy after that elbow injury and Billups has been cleared to play basketball again. Stoudemire has had issues with his back but he has been cleared to play basketball as well and was healthy enough to win a 3 point shooting contest in China last month. Overall, it is great to hear that the two stars have been in contact and hopefully this camp will carry over into better chemistry when the regular season begins.

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Melo League Defeats Goodman League 149-141

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5GntGLvL2U]

On the eve of the second meeting by the NBA and NBAPA to discuss the lockout, the Melo League All Stars led by Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul and LeBron James defeated the Kevin Durant led Goodman League team 149-141 at Morgan State University. Durant had a game high 59 points while LeBron had 38 and Carmelo had 27. Other notable players in this game included: Josh Selby, Gary Neal, DeMarcus Cousins, Brandon Jennings, Donte Greene and Hugh Jones.

I believe these pro-am leagues are great for basketball right now. The attendance for these games is fantastic and I think these games are great because they give fans the chance to see players that they may not be able to see during the NBA season. NBA tickets are not cheap, especially at Madison Square Garden (thanks Dolan) so Melo playing for free in Baltimore, where he grew up, gives those fans a chance to see an NBA star that they could not regularly see.

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Carmelo Anthony Foundation Inaugurates Puerto Rico Sports Center

Amar’e Stoudemire is not the only New York Knick superstar helping other people. On Monday, children from the Lomas housing project in Puerto Rico will be able to enjoy playing basketball at the new sports center reconstructed by Knicks star Carmelo Anthony. This is the second sports center reconstructed in the Caribbean by the Carmelo Anthony Foundation. The other was opened in July 2010 in the San Juan district of La Perla. Some of the improvements include acrylic backboards, new paint jobs and a roof for the sports center. Anthony, whose father was Puerto Rican, said his organization looked at many courts but chose this one because it was “almost perfect” for developing the game.

This is great to hear that Carmelo is proactive in using his stature to help others as well. I always believe athletes of his stature should do all they can to help people in need. In this era of lockouts and disputes over millions of dollars, I love to see that people still help the less fortunate and use their stature to help others. Like Amar’e, I hope Carmelo can continue to make the most of his talents and help others.

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Melo and STAT Look Into Europe Movement

Today Marc Stein reported on ESPN that in fact Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire have reached out to the NBA players association about the possibility of playing basketball over seas. This comes after the news that Derron Williams, the exceptional Nets point guard, has reached a deal to play in Turkey if the lockout goes into next season. The video can be found here.

In the video Stein makes the point that right now everybody is just trying to get information. I think Carmelo and Amare, like all players, wanna play basketball. That is what they are paid to do. That is what they love to do. They aren’t dumb guys, they realize this lockout will probably go into next season and there is a good chance there may not be a next season. They wanna play and get paid. Derron Williams seems to have gotten a great deal in Turkey. As Stein points out, there probably are not as many lucrative offers out there like the one Williams got. While a lot of players want to go and play overseas, it will be interesting to see how many actually go because in order to go they have to get a deal worth their time. Kobe isn’t going to go overseas and play for 800,000 with no out clause and no medical insurance. Players need to have lucrative deals to lure them from the United States.

The whole international movement could impact the Knicks. Stoudemire and Carmelo, I imagine, will be sought after by international teams as they are two of the best players we have in the game today. The only possible scenario in which I like them playing is if they are able to get a deal in which they get to play on the same team, or play on a team with other Knicks. For example, if they signed contracts to play on the same Turkish team with medical insurance and an out clause then yes I would be okay with them going and building some chemistry. I would be more okay with Carmelo going then Stoudemire. Carmelo a) could use the conditioning and extra work and b) has been consistently healthy with no major injuries. STAT, as much as I love him, is an injury concern. He is recovering from that freak back injury he suffered in the playoffs and has terrible knees. He needs as much rest on his body as he can get. It will be interesting to see where this whole thing goes but I think for right now, the Knicks superstars are just building up information and will make a decision further down the road.

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James Dolan Should Re-hire Walsh for NOT Getting LeBron James

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     Tonight, Dallas knocked off the Miami Heat 105-95 to win the series in 6 games. In the series, LeBron James was widely criticized in the series for coming up short in games 4 and 5 and he didn’t disappoint in game 6. Yes he had 21 points on an efficient 9-15 night but he wasn’t his dominant self, his body language was horrible and he wasn’t good on defense. He was a -24 in plus/minus margin and he had 6 turnovers. As Dallas knocked off the “Big Three”, “Heatles” whatever you wanna call them, I could not help but think to myself “I’m happy we don’t have LeBron”. Is he widely considered the best player in the NBA? Yes. I do not know what everyone sees. Yes he is athletically superior and a great defender but his offense is inconsistent and he’s given up on his teams in the past. As documented in Adrian Wojnarowski’s great article today, LeBron gave up on the Olympic national team in 2008 and last year on his Cleveland team in the eastern conference finals. His body language and effort suffers greatly when things do not go well, as documented in game 6. If I had to pick a player to build a team around, I would much rather have Derrick Rose, Dwight Howard, Dwayne Wade or Chris Paul. Or I’d love to have Amare and Carmelo Anthony. While Donnie Walsh didn’t get LeBron last summer, which had more to do with Wade recruiting the big 3 not Walsh’s skills, I think he created a better nucleus then the one that Miami has. Does Miami arguably have 2 of the top 5 players in the league? Yes but the Knicks are not far behind and we have room to improve either by acquiring another star or 2-3 good solid role players. Even though LeBron was the Knicks number 1 goal, I think Walsh should be applauded for coming up with a backup plan that may pay bigger dividends then LeBron ever would. Carmelo and Amare have always been known as being thick skinned players. For example, take this years playoffs. Yea we lost 4-0, but much of that had to do with injuries. Amare played at 50% because he cared about the team, he wanted to win. Carmelo rebounded from a terrible game 1 to post a 42 point 17 rebound game 2. We have guys that want to win and they have no history of ever giving up on a team, much less 2 of them. You have to be mentally tough to play in New York. LeBron’s shown that he’s a mental midget. He gets criticized for poor performance and then plays worse. As my Uncle and I discussed tonight, what if this had been Knicks vs Mavs? The Miami media is nowhere close to the New York media in terms of opinionated criticism. I told my Uncle “if this had been New York, LeBron would have jumped off the Hudson Bridge tonight” and my Uncle responded “Too scared, he’d be hiding under the bridge with (chris) Bosh”

Adrian Wojnarowski Article: http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news?slug=aw-wojnarowski_lebron_james_dwyane_wade_nba_finals_game6_061111

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Melo M7 Advance Release Delayed

Melo’s new M7 Advance was scheduled to be released Thursday but due to demand for the shoe, the release date has been pushed back to June 11. The shoes will not be available online, only in select New York shoe retailers such as House of Hoops on 11 W 34th street or on 268 W 125th street.

Image via The Shoe Game

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Carmelo Anthony – All the Right Moves

Great Carmelo mix on youtube. Made by brave147258 who also has a lot of really good highlight mixes of NBA players so check out his channel.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hzfXWBI-OYI]

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Carmelo the Cake Nazi

Melo’s been watching too much Seinfeld. On Thursday night, Carmelo Anthony’s birthday extravaganza was held at Greenhouse night club in New York City. Carmelo’s birthday cake, created by Ilene Miriam, was a Knicks blue gym bag with Carmelo’s blue number 7 jersey draped over it. Anthony loved the cake so much that he didn’t allow any piece of it to be eaten. He had the cake boxed up and sent to his Hell’s Kitchen apartment completely untouched and uneaten by anyone at the party.

Image Via ESPN

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State of the Knicks 5/30/11

Overview: The 42-40 New York Knicks had high hopes for the playoffs after qualifying for the first time since 2003. The Knicks battled key injuries as Amare Stoudemire was injured badly for games 2,3 and 4, while Chauncey Billups was injured late in game 1 and missed the entire rest of the series. The Knicks were swept by Boston 4-0. They go into this offseason of CBA uncertainty with optimism not seen by this franchise in many years. While Billups’ 14.2 million dollar option has been picked up, there is still plenty of work to be done in terms of working the roster. Of course resigning Donnie Walsh should be priority number 1, although that is said to be done sometime this week. Overall the team is headed in the right direction but needs some work with its bench as well as adding a big man or two. The Knicks select number 17 in the first round of the upcoming NBA draft

Guards: The point guard situation is filled with uncertainty. Billups’ knee is not all the issues we have. While it’s critical that his knee reaches 100% before the season (if we have a season) starts, the backup point guard position is just as critical. While Toney Douglas played that role well last season, his size suits him better as a backup shooting guard. The backup point guard position is a position that many expect to be filled with the 17th pick in the draft. Anthony Carter’s contract is up and it’ll be interesting to see if he is re-signed. The coaching staff loves his professionalism and leadership and I was impressed with his play down the stretch, especially in game 4 of the playoffs as he sparked a Knicks comeback that ultimately fell short. As far as the shooting guard situation, the bench spots will be determined by what happens in the draft. Landry Fields should be the starter next season, and it is imperative to the teams success that he finds his pre-carmelo trade form. If he cannot, then suddenly the Knicks have a gaping hole at the shooting guard position. While Bill Walker and Andy Rautins will both be under contract next season, I’m not high on either player. Everyone seems to think Walker is okay but I think he’s an oaf, in the playoffs he had like 6 offensive fouls. I’m not a fan. Rautins is a wildcard because we haven’t seen what he can do yet. He was a great shooter in college but we know that doesn’t always translate to the NBA. Roger Mason played well in the 2nd half of the year when he got minutes due to injuries to Walker. Mason also played decently in the playoffs when his name was called but he’s undersized and in D’Antoni’s doghouse. Roger Mason is the only shooting guard who’s contact is expired and he is expected to be let go next season.

Forwards: Armelo, Camare, Batman and Robin. Whatever you wanna call them, they are the keys to the 2011 Knicks season. How they mesh is absolutely key to the offense and how they evolve into 2 way players is key to our defense. Offensively, it has to be about ball movement. While Amare and Carmelo are both great isolation players, the key to their cohesion is going to be ball movement. Granted they are dominant scorers but they aren’t the only scorers on this team. Landry Fields, Chauncey Billups, Shawne Williams and Toney Douglas are all lethal 3 point shooters. In order for this team to make the jump to 50-60 wins next season, the offense needs to feature more than 2 players. Don’t get me wrong, they both need their touches on offense but the throw it to Melo, stand around and watch offense needs to be abolished next season. Same goes for Amare, although he was good at feeding Carmelo on cuts and screens when the plays presented themselves. It shouldn’t be a competition for points, rather a mesh of efficient offense that results in high percentage shots being buried by two of the top 10 scorers in our league today. Defensively, the Knicks are a work in progress. The Heat have shown us that defense wins in the playoffs. As much as I hate Miami, I give their guys credit, namely James, Wade and Bosh, for transforming themselves to a dominant defensive team as well as a quality offensive team run by the big 3 (or 2 depending on how you look at it). This transformation needs to be executed by Melo and STAT as well. If the Knicks can at least get stops when needed, the sky will be the limit for this team that is just loaded with scoring. In terms of the backups, Derrick Brown, Shawne Williams and Jared Jeffries are all free agents this summer. Renaldo Balkman, acquired in the Denver deal, is the only backup forward that remains under contract. I believe that all 3 are decent players but depending on who we get on the market, all 3 are extremely expendable. I love Jeffries but his lack of offense is just sickening to watch. If he’d come back, it would have to be on a veteran’s minimum and he’d have a very minimal role (I would hope). Derrick Brown is very interesting to me. As shown in the Toronto game at MSG, he’s incredibly athletic. He’s a guy we should try to keep for cheap and develop. His athleticism gives me reason to believe he can be a serviceable backup wing player much like Shannon Brown from the Lakers. The player I believe we are most likely to resign is Shawne Williams. While he, like Fields, crapped out a bit at the end of the year, he proved to be a versatile player (having guarded Dwight Howard at one point) and a potent 3 point shooter. I think he has the toughness that we need on this team. We need some Mason’s and Oakley’s that will enforce and I think Williams can be that sort of player.

Centers: Ronny Turiaf was the playoff starter and he’s likely coming back on his 4 million dollar player option. I like Turiaf but not at 4 mil a season. He’s a high energy game but any more than 18 minutes a game and he wears down. I’d like him on a vet minimum and coming off the bench, he’d be a nice piece. Jeffries and Shelden Williams were the other two players who saw minutes at center. While Shelden Williams played well in the season, he saw no minutes in the playoffs leading me to believe he will not be back. The big story for the Knicks at center is Jerome Jordan, the 7 footer we purchased from Milwaukee last summer. He played this past year in Serbia and played well averaging 9 points and 4 boards a game. He should be a strong piece coming off the bench, or maybe starting a la Timofey Mozgov last season. This, along with Point guard is a position that may be addressed with the 17th pick in the draft.

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