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NBAGround >> What do the experts say about Carmello?


1/18/11 11:58 PM
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kanotoa
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Is he worth all the fuss? Carmelo Anthony, that is.

Based on a suddenly soaring media profile, fueled by trade talk both real and speculative, and enhanced by the fact that at least one team is pulling out all stops to get him, you'd think Anthony is a cut above. And he is. Sort of.

After speaking with a half-dozen scouts and front-office types, here are two things we gather about the league's "most discussed" player:

He's a dangerous scorer; top five in the league.

And if he's your team's best player, your team probably won't win a championship.

This was the consensus opinion of those who study games for a living, and it sounds about right. 'Melo does one thing extremely well. Anthony will put up nice numbers almost on a nightly basis, against almost any defense. He can and will take the big shot, which is important, since many players want no part of the ball in money time. And he forces teams to change the way they play defense.

Said one scout: "You can't find a lot of players who can break down a defense off the dribble and in addition shoot from the outside like he does. Some players can do one or the other but not both at a very high level like that. When he's got it working, you must double him, or he'll kill you. LeBron [James], [Kevin] Durant, Kobe [Bryant] and [Dwyane] Wade are in that category. That's about it."

Said another: "He faces the basket about as well as anyone. His footwork, step-back jumper, the way he gets his man off-balance, the way he sets up his man, it's a rare gift. Fun to watch."

But then ...

Anthony lacks most of the intangibles necessary to be a great player, they say. And this is why the Nets, or whoever gets him for the long-term and wants to win a championship, are advised to find another All-Star teammate for him, if they don't already have one. The scouts all agree Anthony just doesn't have "it" to be the focal point of a contender, to motivate teammates and to impact games other than scoring (although 'Melo is one of the league's better rebounding small forwards).

One scout: "If he's your main guy, your team won't be lifting the trophy. He's Dominique Wilkins in that regard."

Another scout: "Because he's such a terrific scorer, you've got to have him on your team, but that doesn't make him a team player. Does that make any sense?"

Anthony is a wanted man partly because he refuses to commit himself to the Nuggets, and partly because no one else at his level is on the market. That's why there's the perception that everyone wants him. Which isn't necessarily the case.

Only the Nets and Knicks have expressed heavy interest, and at least with the Knicks, that interest has strings attached. They've made no attempt to strip their team in order to trade for Anthony, preferring to wait until summer to get him for free. And perhaps cheaper. That feeds the theory that teams don't feel 'Melo is in the LeBron/Kobe/Wade/Durant class (good enough to carry a team). Until the Nuggets added Chauncey Billups, they went beyond the first round only once with Melo.

Interestingly, few if any other contenders are bothering to scrape together the necessary goods and rearrange their roster to pry Anthony away from Denver. That's partly because they're not getting strong enough signals from Anthony that he'd be willing to sign a contract extension, but also because they're not sure 'Melo would make that much of a difference. So why go through all the trouble?

The Bulls evidently like their team, now that Carlos Boozer is (relatively) healthy. And coach Tom Thibodeau is a stickler for defense, not one of 'Melo's specialties.

The Magic pulled the trigger for Gilbert Arenas, Hedo Turkoglu and Jason Richardson and not Anthony, although that's probably because they couldn't give the Nuggets the right amount of compensation.

The Lakers have resisted the urge not only to add 'Melo, but any scorer who might threaten Kobe Bryant's role.

The Celtics have no trade bait, and besides, if healthy, the defending Eastern Conference champs, who nearly won it all last summer, like their chances as is.

And can you imagine Miami adding 'Melo to that mix? Even if they had something to give the Nuggets? No, you can't.

Even if he joins the Nets, 'Melo wouldn't be thrilled with his surroundings in the short-term. The Nets would need to add considerably; that's where all the Chris Paul talk factors in, although they'd probably see competition for Paul from the Knicks in two years when Paul can become an unrestricted free agent. And, as Melo said last week: "I just want to win. At the end of the day, that's all I care about."

A few teams would love to try and win with him.

What's interesting is all the teams who'd rather win without him.
1/18/11 11:59 PM
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kanotoa
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I truly hope he goes to the Knicks so Tommy can get his wish.
1/19/11 5:52 AM
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PTM2020
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 so did that deal with the nets fall through?
1/19/11 3:40 PM
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quick
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Edited: 01/19/11 4:05 PM
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PTM2020 -  so did that deal with the nets fall through?


It sounds like Mello is playing coy and trying to force the Knick's hand. The hater in me hopes that he dicks around with these teams trying to trade for him, and ends up shit out of luck in regards to a trade and his extension.
1/19/11 5:47 PM
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CRBMoney14
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Just skimmed it, but pretty weak article.

LOL the Lakers and Heat arent trying to get Melo, so he must suck!
1/19/11 7:09 PM
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quick
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lol @ the Russian saying he is sick of Mello's BS and they are moving on. One of the only cards Mello had to force the Knicks to trade for him now just left the playing table.
1/19/11 7:47 PM
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I don't think he wants to leave all that money on the table especially considering the lockout, but if he does then more power to him.
1/19/11 9:02 PM
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dangerboy12
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 Legend comparison

Bernard King

How many great teams was he on?

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