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Carmelo Anthony reportedly wanted New York Knicks to trade for Rajon Rondo

Kobe-Bryant-Carmelo-AnthonyWith all the salary cap space the Los Angeles Lakers are expected to have in 2014 after losing Dwight Howard to the Houston Rockets, there has been some speculation that they could make a run at a big name free agent like Carmelo Anthony. Anthony and Bryant have a close relationship, and there have been some rumblings that ‘Melo is not thrilled with the direction of the New York Knicks.

One of those rumblings came from Marc Berman of the NY Post, who claims Anthony was hoping the Knicks would try to trade for Rajon Rondo when it became clear the Boston Celtics were blowing up their roster. According to Berman, Carmelo feels Rondo would be the “perfect piece” in New York and would be extra motivated to get the best of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, who are now with the Brooklyn Nets.

For now, it appears that Boston is planning to build around Rondo and new head coach Brad Stevens. By re-signing JR Smith, the Knicks may not have left themselves with enough money to pursue any significant outside free agents. New York did trade for Andrea Bargnani last month, but it doesn’t sound like that is a move Anthony believes will bring the team to the next level.

Simply put, it appears the Knicks have to build a championship contender right now to keep Anthony around after next season. That could mean bringing in Rondo or another impact player, or it could mean rolling the dice with what they currently have. Either way, don’t expect Anthony to feel any type of loyalty toward New York if the Knicks underachieve again next year.

But Kobe and Carmelo on the same team, with the way they both love launching up shots? I can’t see that happening.

H/T SB Nation

Jim Boeheim rips Knicks, defends Carmelo Anthony

Carmelo-Anthony-Knicks-DefenseAfter an impressive showing against the Boston Celtics in the opening round of the NBA playoffs, the New York Knicks barely put up a fight against the Indiana Pacers. The team was ice cold offensively throughout most of the series and lost Game 6 on Saturday by a score of 106-99, despite Carmelo Anthony’s 39 points on 15 of 29 shooting.

Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim, who coached Anthony during the Orange’s national championship season in 2003, is not surprised the Knicks were bounced from the playoffs. Simply put, he feels that Carmelo was doing everything by himself.

“Not on that team,” Boeheim told the Syracuse Post-Standard when asked if Anthony can win an NBA title. “He did what he can do. He played very well the final game. Everybody’s killing him but Tyson Chandler just didn’t try to catch the ball. He threw him the ball and Tyson Chandler (dodged it). He was wide open. He should have been looking for the ball right here. Kenyon Martin should have been looking for the ball. They both went like this (Boeheim dodged his head). Carmelo gets turnovers and the announcers aren’t smart enough to even think, ‘Well, the guy should try to catch the ball.'”

Boeheim took most of the Knicks to task, adding that JR Smith (who is reportedly sticking around in New York for a while) and Raymond Felton “weren’t great players” on their former teams and now the Knicks are asking them to do too much. But he seemed particularly frustrated with Chandler.

“Tyson Chandler claims he never gets the ball,” Boeheim said.” He doesn’t try to get the ball. He had two points and (Roy) Hibbert had 21.”

He wasn’t done there.

“In Miami the second and third options are Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh,” Boeheim continued. “Your fourth option is Ray Allen, who is still in good shape. Your fifth option is Shane Battier, who is still a good player. The New York Knicks have who?”

Boeheim said he told his son during Game 6 that Anthony would have to score 50 for New York to win. He also blamed the Knicks’ offensive scheme, saying Carmelo has to run an isolation offense and go one-on-one too often. He’s right. Anthony is a great player, but he’s not Kobe Bryant or LeBron James. The Knicks aren’t going to win a title with him taking 30 shots a game.

H/T NY Post

Roy Hibbert had an amazing block on Carmelo Anthony; Stephen A. Smith was not impressed (Video)

Roy Hibbert blockRoy Hibbert had an amazing block on Carmelo Anthony in the fourth quarter of Game 6 between the Indiana Pacers and New York Knicks that was a major turning point in the game.

The Knicks were up 92-90 with around five minutes left and looked like they might send the Eastern Conference semifinals series to a seventh game. The quarter had gone back-and-forth and was a one-possession game for the first seven minutes. But that’s when Hibbert changed the game.

The Pacers center came over to defend the rim after Anthony spun around Paul George and headed for a baseline dunk. He managed to stuff Melo’s dunk attempt at the rim. The ESPN replay showed the struggle between the two at the rim and how Hibbert’s strength stood up to ‘Melo’s. It was a thing of beauty.

The block sparked the Pacers; they went on a 9-0 run and won 106-99 to end the series. They outscored the Knicks 16-7 after the block, which was Hibbert’s fifth of the game.

Carmelo credited Hibbert for causing “havoc” in the paint. Everyone viewed it as a major turning point. But the only one unwilling to heap praise on Hibbert for the play was ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith, who said he wasn’t about to throw Hibbert “a cookie” for the play.

“It was a pivotal play in the game, no doubt about it, but I’m not about to throw him a cookie. He is 7-feet-2 for crying out loud. It’s nice to see him get up and block that shot,” Smith said after the game.

“That particular play, as great of a block as it was, I guess, you’re 7-feet-2. A guy 6-foot-8 is coming your way. I expect you to be able to make that play. That’s what you’re on the court for. I’m not about to give him cookies and milk for that.”

You can see his comments below:

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Carmelo Anthony: Why is everybody mad LeBron James wasn’t unanimous MVP?

Carmelo-Anthony-KnicksLeBron James won the NBA’s MVP award on Sunday, but he fell one vote shy of being a unanimous selection. The writer who did not vote for LeBron, Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe, wrote a column on Monday defending his decision to give Carmelo Anthony a first-place vote. Not surprisingly, ‘Melo doesn’t see what all the fuss is about.

“As far as the guy in Boston, I don’t know why he catches so much flak for that,” Anthony said after Game 2 against the Pacers, via the NY Daily News. “He has the right to vote for whoever he want. LeBron won the MVP. Why is everybody so mad that he didn’t win it unanimously? … Thank you.”

Of course Carmelo understands why Washburn voted for him, even though 120 other voters felt LeBron was the obvious choice. A lot of people think Washburn only voted for someone other than James to make a point and be different, but it’s not as if he voted for a bench player.

Anthony led the NBA in scoring with 28.7 points per game and has carried the Knicks for a large portion of the season. Washburn said he felt Carmelo was more important to the Knicks than LeBron is to the Heat, which is a tough argument to make. Not only is LeBron one of the best offensive players in the game, he was also in the running for Defensive Player of the Year honors. Anthony is more of a scorer than an all-around threat like James.

In any event, we know who Carmelo would have voted for.

H/T Pro Basketball Talk

Gary Washburn defends decision to vote for Carmelo Anthony as MVP over LeBron

Carmelo-Anthony-KnicksLeBron James won his fourth NBA MVP trophy on Sunday, falling just one first-place vote shy of being a unanimous selection. LeBron received 120 of the 121 possible first-place votes and, during Sunday’s award ceremony at American Airlines Arena, he speculated that a New York writer was the one who voted for Carmelo Anthony over him.

“It’s probably a writer out of New York that didn’t give me the vote,” James said, via ESPN.com. “I know the history between the Heat and the Knicks. So I get it.”

He guessed wrong.

Anthony’s lone vote was cast by the Boston Globe’s Gary Washburn. LeBron assumed it was a New York writer fueling the rivalry between the Knicks and Heat, but the Celtics and Heat dislike each other just as much. However, Washburn attempted to explain his decision — one that he says had nothing to do with rivalries or a personal agenda — in a column on Monday morning.

…this isn’t the Best Player in the Game award, it’s the Most Valuable Player award, and I think what Anthony accomplished this season was worthy of my vote. He led the Knicks to their first division title in 19 years.

That’s a long time ago.

Anthony led the league in scoring average and basically carried an old Knicks team to the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference. Amar’e Stoudemire missed most of the season with knee issues, Raymond Felton missed six weeks, and Tyson Chandler dealt with nagging injuries, leaving Anthony, J.R. Smith, and a bunch of lottery picks from the mid-1990s to win 54 games and beat the Miami Heat three times.

Washburn sternly opposed the notion that he voted for Carmelo simply to go against the grain, insisting he did not go around asking the other voters who they were voting for. He also said he was surprised that he was the only person who didn’t give LeBron a first-place vote, which seems hard to believe when more than 100 other people did it. His argument is simply that Anthony has made the Knicks relevant again.

This isn’t the first time it has seemed like a first-place vote given to a player for no reason and it certainly won’t be the last. It happens every year in almost every sport. That being said, the NBA does not reveal the names of voters. Kudos to Washburn for coming forward and trying to validate his decision.

Carmelo Anthony: La La has a right to be upset with Jordan Crawford, Celtics

Jordan Crawford Carmelo AnthonyThere is no shortage of bad blood heading into Friday night’s Game 6 matchup between the New York Knicks and Boston Celtics. That became evident after the final buzzer sounded following Game 5 and the two teams had to be separated. At the center of that dust-up were Jordan Crawford and Carmelo Anthony, with Crawford supposedly making deragatory remarks about Carmelo’s wife La La Anthony.

On Thursday, La La seemingly took a shot at Crawford on her Instagram account and called him out for being a benchwarmer. Crawford later denied that he said anything about Mrs. Anthony, but Carmelo seems to think differently.

“I would be upset too if I were her,” Anthony said on Friday, via the NY Daily News. “She always gets thrown into the mix of the Boston Celtics series. So I would be upset. She’s her own person and at the end of the day so she has the right to say what she wants to say.”

Of course, Anthony is referring to the Honey Nut Cheerios incident that took place between him and Kevin Garnett back in January. We have no way of knowing whether Garnett or Crawford actually said something about La La, but there’s usually fire where there’s this much smoke. Also, ‘Melo was about 10 inches from Crawford’s face during Wednesday night’s mix-up.

Anthony is right — his wife does have every right to express herself when she is involuntarily dragged into the rivalry. And we’re glad she did, because it’s just one more thing that adds to the hatred these two teams already feel toward one another.

Jordan Crawford, Carmelo Anthony at center of postgame mixup (Video)

Jordan Crawford Carmelo AnthonyJordan Crawford got into it with Carmelo Anthony after the Boston Celtics’ 92-86 win over the New York Knicks in Game 5 of their playoff series on Wednesday night.

As the final seconds were ticking off the clock, Crawford appeared to say something to Anthony. Raymond Felton didn’t like what he heard and tried sticking up for his teammate.

Though Melo walked away, others players got in between Felton and Crawford.

Anthony had an off night shooting. He went just 8-of-24 for 22 points and missed all five of his three point attempts. Crawford, meanwhile, didn’t even play in the game, yet he was running his mouth afterwards. Another player feeling more cocky than he should.

Credit to Carmelo for not falling into the trash talking trap the way he did in January with Kevin Garnett.

“I’m not thinking about Jordan Crawford right now,” Anthony said after the game, per the Washington Post’s Michael Lee. “I don’t even think he deserves for you to be typing about him.”

What’s this? A newer, wiser Carmelo Anthony? I’m shocked he didn’t get caught up in the trash talk this time. That’s smart, because the Knicks need him focused so they can close out this series.