To escape a bad losing streak, Carmelo had to channel his inner warrior.
Carmelo Anthony was one of the best offensive players in the NBA.
He scored whenever he wanted to. He has his fundamentals down and was able to enter the zone at any moment.
Take for instance the final play in Game 3 of the 2009 Western Conference Semifinals.
Melo was having a bad game. He was getting clamped down by the Dallas Mavericks and was forced to take tough shots all night.
The game was close throughout, but the Denver Nuggets were down 2 in the final seconds of the fourth quarter and needed a big shot to get the victory.
And despite only making 37 percent of his shots in that contest, Anthony knew he had to be the one to take the final shot.
He took a moment during the timeout to prepare himself mentally. He took deep breaths, calmed down his mind, and visualized the play that was drawn and all its counters and counters-for-the-counters (or at least that’s what I think he did).
Then he walked onto the hardwood to set it up.
As soon as the referees blew the whistle, he ran through double screens to the top of the key to catch an inbounds pass.
He immediately drove right but stumbled and momentarily lost the ball. But he recovered and continued his drive.
The Mavericks’ Antoine Wright committed a foul but the referees didn’t call it and Anthony continued with the play.
He fought through the contact and rose up for a 3.
He took on the challenge and was bestowed with cheers, praise, and the victory.
62 Points at the Garden
And as great as this was, it wasn’t even his greatest performance.
A few years later, in 2014, Anthony scored a whopping 62 points on 66 percent.
He was with the New York Knicks and they were hosting the Charlotte Bobcats.
The Knicks were on a 5-game losing streak and Melo knew he had to make something happen this game. He and his team were in dire need of a win.
So, he once again channelled his scoring Chi.
He spent the night and the moments prior to the game to meditate. He cleared his mind of all distractions and focused on what he was going to do and how he was going to do it (or at least that’s what I’m imagining him doing).
He stepped onto the court mindful and ready to ball.
And ready he was.
He sliced, diced, banged, and dissected the Bobcats to a career-high.
He entered the zone early in the first quarter and knocked down 20 points on 80 percent shooting.
Then in the second quarter, he poured in another cool 17 points, which included a half-court buzzer-beater.
Anthony continued his offensive attack on the Bobcats in the second half and scored 25 points.
And the wild thing is that he didn’t commit a single turnover or dish out one assist.
He just scored at his own will and the Bobcats couldn’t do anything to stop him.
Anthony led New York to a 125-96 victory over Charlotte -the first of four consecutive wins.
Carmelo Anthony was a master of scoring.
He did what he wanted with the basketball and did it whenever he wanted.
He’s had so many poetic plays throughout his career.
Which was your favourite?
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