Knicks Should Beat Pacers, But Indiana Is Tough – And Carmelo Isn’t

By Jason Keidel
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Let me put this in a way that even the most evangelical Carmelo Anthony apologists — the Melo Kool-Aid junkies who think that his name is cool and that he was born in Brooklyn and is married to someone famous — can fathom it.

Anthony has now played 10 seasons, winning more than one playoff series in just one of them, with a chance to win another this week. Why? Because he doesn’t pass the basketball and makes just 42 percent of his shots in the playoffs.

There’s a reason that most of the most prolific gunners — George Gervin, Allen Iverson, Tracy McGrady, etc. — don’t win championships. Their monolithic, robotic approach to playing drags their teammates across the hardwood, leaving streaks across the court and their careers.

I did backflips when I heard Tyson Chandler’s not-so-nuanced remarks. It doesn’t take a cryptology major to understand that Chandler called Anthony a ball hog, and that you don’t win championships watching one man shoot the ball all night.

Of course, the Anthony zombies have all taken to Chandler, calling him a cocktail of vulgarities. Why address his comments and dissect your hero when you can deflect?

Knicks fans don’t want Amar’e Stoudemire to play because plopping him next to Anthony is like rubbing two basketball magnets together. In terms of assists — passing when no prudent shot is available — Anthony makes Kevin McHale look like Magic Johnson.

If Anthony was the essential superstar to win a title, then why has Denver won more games since trading him to New York?

For the record, Chandler has one thing that Anthony does not — a championship ring. Why? Because he’s about victory before vanity, and he played with a younger Jason Kidd, who has the gravitas but not the game anymore to corral Anthony into the team ethos.

The Knicks should beat the Pacers because, frankly, Indiana is not that talented. But they’re tough. And Anthony isn’t. If he were, if he were the least bit unselfish and introspective, he would learn to change his game and his name.

10 years and counting.

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