Amar’e, unfortunately, is one of the most injury prone players that we have in the league. He’s gone through two micro-fracture surgeries on his knees, had a bulging disk in his back, and now he has to wear goggles because of a cut he suffered in his eye during a game. And now, after Game 2′s loss Monday night against Miami, Stoudemire injured his hand after hitting the glass case surrounding a fire extinguisher.
From Ian Begley of ESPN New York:
“It wasn’t like I had a closed fist and just punched through the glass,” Stoudemire said on Wednesday. “It was nothing like that. I just walked by, wanted to make some noise, swung my arm, hit the fire extinguisher door and didn’t even realize i was cut at all until Josh Harrellson told me I was cut.
Nurse Jackie – played by Eddie Falco aka Mrs. Soprano – is a TV show on Showtime, and although I’ve never watched an episode, the plot has to do with her pill-popping issues. Just aired this past Friday, Knicks superstar Carmelo Anthony showed his acting abilities (he was believable) as a professional baseball player.
See Melo’s not-too-shabby acting in the clip below.
No Jeremy Lin, No Amar’e: Just Carmelo Anthony. And thanks to his 43 points and this absolutely cold-blooded 3-pointer against Chicago on Sunday, the Knicks are back to being Melo’s team. But you know what the best thing about that shot is? Anthony hit that same shot against Luol Deng two years again when he was still with the Nuggets. (see video here)
As long as Carmelo Anthony remained on the Knicks, never in a day would I have thought there was a better player in crunch time this season on the same team as his. Well, in this case, it just so happens to be the fan favorite: Jeremy Lin. I first caught a glimpse of Lin’s clutch-ness when the Knicks played Toronto; not only did he wave off his own coach, the play itself, and his teammates, but he ended up hitting his best shot of the season: A pull-up 3.
It was absolutely filthy.
It’s become apparent that Lin likes the ball in his hands if you watch Knicks’ games. Carmelo wants it, too, don’t get me wrong, but he hasn’t been the same player since he injured his groin. He’s not attacking the basket and settling for way too many jumpers. Luckily for New York, Lin loves to attack the basket judging by his average shot attempts of 4.1 at the rim. (52%)
Kobe Bryant also loves having the ball in his hands during crunch time. And as ESPN True Hoops blogger, Henry Abbott, points out – Lin wants it just as much, if not more.
In the final five minutes of games within five points, Bryant’s usage rate is a high 42.4. Lin’s is close behind, at 36.6 — higher than, say, Chris Paul’s 33.9, and in the same range as Kevin Durant (40.1) and Carmelo Anthony (43.5). You might say that’s heady stuff for a player whose coach keeps reminding people is effectively a rookie.
But also worth noting is that in these short minutes — Lin has played just 39 that qualify — he has had the best true shooting percentage of the bunch. He has taken 24 shots in 39 crunch time minutes, and hit only nine of them. The secret to his efficiency has been that he has made three of his five 3-pointers, while getting to the line an impressive 18 times, while missing just two. The result is a true shooting percentage (a measure that accounts for 3s and free throws) of 58, compared to Paul’s 57.2, Durant’s 53.8, Anthony’s 43.5 and Bryant’s 42.7.
Now, Mr. Abbott is not saying that Lin is the most clutch player in the league all of a sudden, but because of his 3-pointer against Toronto and the ability to get to the free-throw line, he remains at the top.
The most interesting thing, though, is how will Carmelo handle not having the ball in his hands at the end of close games for the rest of the season? Especially if they make playoffs. If I were interim coach Mike Woodson and Lin myself, I’d keep doing what’s working because as the old saying goes, “Don’t fix what isn’t broken.”
As Carmelo’s biggest fan, and having watched him thoroughly throughout his career, I know when he tries and when he doesn’t. When he does try on both ends of the court, he’s arguably the best player in the game because of his size, quickness and physical style of play. When he doesn’t? He instantly becomes a Top 25 player. (Which isn’t bad either, but he’s so much better than that) It’s been only 3 games since former Knicks head coach Mike D’Antoni decided to walk away from the team after he failed to win in New York. Well, if anyone knows what kind of coach D’Antoni is, and has been his entire career, he’s soft. He doesn’t yell, doesn’t threaten, nothing.
If you look at coaches like George Karl and Gregg Popovich, those guys will tell you like it is and will have no problem letting you know that you sucked or had a horrible game. It’s tough love, but it’s still love and better for your own good moving forward.
With D’Antoni’s parting, former Atlanta Hawks head coach, Mike Woodson, was named the interim head coach and has the Knicks on a 3-game winning streak. Since then, Carmelo Anthony hasn’t put up over 20 points, but according to him, his defensive effort has increased the most it has all season.
“I think in the last three games, my focus was to have an energy that I haven’t had so far this season, especially on the defensive end,” he said. “Everybody on this team knows, everybody in the world knows I can score the basketball. It’s not that important to me.”
People know how to word things a certain way so they don’t come out the way they really want them to so they can avoid controversy. Well, unfortunately for Melo, I’m not a fool. Nor am I blind. For those who didn’t understand what he was saying from the quote above, Carmelo is saying that now their offensive coach is gone, he’s giving a better effort defensively because Woodson is known as a defensive coach.
Melo’s not scoring like his usual self, but he’s focusing on a part of his game that is most criticized. And the Knicks are winning. So whatever he’s doing right, needs to continue.
As for my comments above about D’Antoni’s lack of criticism, Carmelo welcomed Woodson’s with open arms.
“When he got the job, I told him, ‘Hold me accountable,’ ” Anthony said of Woodson. “I don’t have a problem with criticism. If I can do something to help better this team, let me know. And he’s been doing that.”
It’s true, Anthony has no problem with taking criticism from a coach because he played under George Karl for 7 years. And as a Nugget’ fan, trust me, he’s the “King of Criticism.” Hopefully the Knicks success continues through the playoffs because Carmelo has taken a lot of heat since returning to the lineup with Jeremy Lin at point guard. Folks said they couldn’t work because he needs the ball in his hands. Well, that’s true.
But at the end of the day, Melo just wants to win.
And that’s something you can’t criticize.
*This cover is a remake of the original with Stephon Marbury and Kevin Garnett
The Minnesota Timberwolves aren’t playing around this year. They’re done with being the laughingstock of the NBA (which now belongs to the Charlotte Bobcats, despite they’re 20-point comeback win over Orlando on Tuesday). And the homies over at SLAM recognized that. Ricky Rubio, although struggling as of late, busted onto the scene and instantly became mentioned in Rookie of the Year talks. As for Kevin Love, well, he’s been destroying every power forward in the league on his way to becoming the best inside and out player in the game right now.
Just this past week, Love’s dropped 42 points and 10 rebounds on LaMarus Aldridge (pretty sure that damaged his pride) and 39 points to go along with 17 boards on Blake Griffin and the rest of his supposed “tough” frontline with DeAndre Jordan, Kenyon Martin and Reggie Evans. It’s time for everyone to step aside because Love is here to stay.
Jeremy Lin is an incredible story, except, he’s not really a story. He’s the real deal. A Harvard graduate and the second-coming off a Chauncey Billups type career during his early years in the NBA after he was bounced around by Houston and Golden State, Lin was given a chance in New York and never looked back. Against the Nets on February 4 (he did not start despite playing 35 minutes), Lin gave Deron Williams 25 points, 5 rebounds and 7 assists. Fluke? Absolutely not. He led to Knicks on a 7-game win streak while averaging 24.4 points (He dropped 38 on Kobe and the Lakers!).
No matter how much we want to avoid it, but ever since Carmelo Anthony’s returned in the Knicks starting lineup, the Knicks have struggled. They’re not playing with the same excitement/swagger they once were when their best player was nursing a groin injury for two weeks. Anthony requires a lot of attention and a lot of time with the basketball, and he’s not a player who runs up and down on the court; he runs isolation plays. Melo’s having the worst year of his career and isn’t doing the things that New York traded their entire team for him to do, which is to take, and make, big shots.
Anthony may be the star, but Lin’s the one who revived New York.
This might be the greatest find in the history of YouTube finds.
I happened to come across this after seeing what happened between Andre Iguodala and the homie Carmelo Anthony in Wednesday nights game between the Knicks and Sixers, where Iggy got tangled up with ‘Melo and ended up pissing him off the rest of the night so he dropped 27 on him.
As for the video, this is extremely rare and I’ve never seen it on another blog.
This was back somewhere between the ’06, ’07 and ’08 seasons when ‘Melo and Allen Iverson were teammates in Denver. According to the info section, this came after the Nuggets had defeated Kobe Bryant and the Lakers, which follows with A.I. and ‘Melo using foul language in a car before heading out to a few clubs. The aftermath, where Anthony is standing around blatantly drunk, is just him talking about players on the team such as Nene (who got rid of “Porno Honey” LOL) and how teams don’t want to meet Denver in the playoffs (damn, we came up short).
It’s not very often we see what players are like outside the game, but we already know how Iverson was and probably still is, but this was also before ‘Melo had his child and has matured greatly since. I mean, just look at what he’s wearing in this video and how he dresses now. It’s a complete 360.
Two Superstars, the same shoe deal, but the same team?
It could happen.
The Magic’s four-time Defensive Player of the Year winner wants out of Orlando, which we already know. He’s made that statement public a few times and listed his top destinations as either L.A. (the Lakers, not the Clippers), the Dallas Mavericks or the New Jersey/Brooklyn Nets. But what about Chicago?
Sure, they already have the reigning MVP in Derrick Rose — who is a superstar, by the way — but what else? They don’t have another go-to guy but they have a bunch of role players that mesh perfectly and are easily the best defensive team in the entire league right now.
Dwyane Wade passed on the opportunity to come home to Chicago and bring the city another championship in the Post-Jordan era, but he chose to stay in Miami with ‘Bron and Bosh. Carmelo Anthony said he’d love to play for the Bulls, but his heart was really in New York. Rose hasn’t tried to lure in any players because he feels like the team is perfect where their at now, but what happens when you never get passed the 2nd round in the playoffs and you keep getting older, and older, and the team you once felt could win a title is no longer intact?
That’s when you wish you had another superstar right by your side.
Early Wednesday morning, Charles Barkley joined ‘The Waddle & Silvy Show‘ to discuss the Bulls and Heat, Joakim Noah and the possibility of Dwight Howard coming to Chicago:
“You want to play with another great player if you possibly can, but the thing about wanting to be the man, that’s just silly,” Barkley said Wednesday on “The Waddle & Silvy Show” on ESPN 1000. “He should want to play with Derrick Rose. That would be a beautiful combination for the city of Chicago.”
Barkley has a real point: Why doesn’t Dwight want to play with Rose? Every big man in the history of the NBA needed a point guard to pass to them. For some crazy reason, there has been speculation that since both stars are sponsored by Adidas, the company doesn’t want both of their players in the same market (Okay? Rose you take Nike and Howard stays with Adidas. There, everyone’s happy. Just get this done).
Barkley, who isn’t exactly the sharpest tack, doesn’t even get these guys:
“I don’t understand what these guys are thinking,” Barkley said. “Him and Derrick Rose would make the Bulls a championship contender for the next 10 years. You just want to play with as many good players or great players as possible. I think him and Derrick Rose would make a fabulous combination. I don’t know what’s going on with [the Howard situation].”
To me, I believe that in Howard’s mind he thinks that if he leaves Orlando he’s going to continue to be “that guy,” but he’s sorely mistaken. The only reason he’s “that guy” with the Magic is because who else do they have? A bunch of 3-point shooters? Yeah, about that ..
If Howard somehow ends up in a Bulls uniform this season, he’ll learn to be second fiddle because you don’t want to fight over shots with the guy who runs the show. Another big problem with Howard is that he continually disappears in big moments of the game because he’s a such a terrible free-throw shooter, which means teams give him the ‘Hack-a-Shaq’ treatment. So if Howard’s smart, he’d grow up and realize that most need help.
Four years ago seems like nearly a decade by the way time flies these days. I was just 19 years old and entering my sophomore year at Indiana University when Team USA’s ‘Redeem Team’ took the gold medal at the ’08 Olympics in Beijing. The ’92 Dream Team is still the hardest team ever assembled with a Starting Five that consisted of Michael Jordan, Karl Malone, Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, and Magic Johnson.
But the ‘Redeem Team’ were no slouches, either.
LeBron James was their best all-around player with Kobe coming in a close second, Dwyane Wade regained his ’06 championship form, and we got a chance to see both Chris Paul and Deron Williams be taken under Jason Kidd’s wing.
The way all that talented meshed together as one was a thing of beauty for a daily hoop-head, especially since most in my generation don’t remember watching the ’92 Olympic games. I grew as Carmelo Anthony grew into The Bully, and he’s since grown into my favorite player ever.
Although only 12 of the best players in the world will be selected to attend the 2012 Olympics in London this year (18 attend practice and try to earn a roster spot), but former ESPN beat writer Chris Sheridan is reporting that they’re planning on bringing in one more heavy hitter for his chance to shine: LaMarcus Aldridge.
The Portland Trail Blazers forward has gained the attention of Team USA coach Mike Krzyzewski with his strong start to the season, averaging 22.6 points and 7.8 rebounds for the Blazers (6-2), who are tied with Philadelphia for the NBA’s fourth-best record. The Blazers are coached by Nate McMillan, an assistant under Krzyzewski on the national team staff.
“Everybody has had the number at 18, and everybody had Blake Griffin as the only guy who wasn’t on the ’08 (Olympics) and ’10 (World Championship) teams. But they don’t know about Aldridge,” a source with knowledge of USA Basketball’s plans told SheridanHoops.com.
With Aldridge added, this is what the 19-man roster would look like:
Just by looking at that roster I see growth, more experience, and a better team than the ’08 squad. I don’t see Russell Westbrook knocking D-Will off the list, and as of right now I don’t see Lamar Odom beating out Kevin Love for a spot.
Which players do you think will make the cut? Training camp begins July 5.
Above (from l-r): Carmelo Anthony wore his Jordan Melo M8 Christmas Day kicks in a win against the C’s, Chris Paul wore his Jordan CP3.V XMas day kicks in his debut with the Clippers, and D-Wade rocked his Jordan Fly Wade 2 XMas day kicks in the Heat’s blowout over the Mavericks.
Below (from l-r): KD rocked the Nike Zoom KD IV “Coppers” against the Magic, LeBron put on the XMas Day LeBron 9′s, Kobe laced up Nike Zoom Kobe VII “Cheetahs” in a loss against the Bulls, and Amare wore his special XMas colored Air Max Sweep Thrus.
All of the shoes are in stores now!