Tuesday, April 20th, 2010 at 9:00 am  |  35 responses

Carmelo Anthony Stopper: Matt Harpring?

by Marcel Mutoni / @marcel_mutoni

Harpring, once one of the League’s toughest — and certainly one of its most physical — defenders now works for the Utah Jazz on the television side of things, but that hasn’t stopped him from having an impact on the Utah/Denver series.

Last night, his advice to former teammates paid major dividends, and the surprise of everyone, it’s now a tied-up affair heading back to Utah.

Prior to Game 2, Matt Harpring encouraged Jazz defenders to get extra physical with ‘Melo, because according to Harpring, that would rattle Anthony. The Nuggets’ superstar forward eventually fouled out late in the fourth quarter (and struggled with his shooting) and his team lost last night, and afterward, team exec Rex Champman complained about Harpring’s impact.

From the Denver Post:

Rex Chapman, Denver’s vice president of player personnel, said after Game 2 that “when flopping and flailing is rewarded, it is a tough game to play for a guy (Anthony) who does not know how to do either.” Chapman also pointed to the quotes from former Jazz player Matt Harpring, who in previous seasons had sometimes rattled Melo with physical punishment on the defensive end.

“All day, I read articles where Matt Harpring was saying the Jazz need to dirty the game up, to hold, grab and lean on Melo as much as possible. I guess the players read those quotes as well. It looked like they took it to heart. It was just frustrating. I think three of Melo’s fouls were offensive and he did have guys leaning on him all night. So I guess they did what they had to do. Now that we know that this sort of play will be allowed, I believe we will be able to adjust.”

Gotta love the head games that teams play with one another at this time of the year.

With the next two games being in Utah’s extra-loud arena, Denver will need to come up with its own psychological ploys if they hope to wrestle back homecourt advantage.

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  • Ken

    That Spalding ad on the front page needs to go. It’s so annoying.

  • http://thekobebeef.wordpress.com LDR4

    Dear Rex Chapman,
    IT’S THE PLAYOFFS! Of course teams are going to a physical with your team’s best player. It happens every year.

  • LA Huey

    Man, that was a good game.

  • Michael Scorn

    @Ken- I’m just happy the d-wade ad is gone. That was hell.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/ niQ

    Out of all the playoff games I’ve seen this far, this game had to be the most physical one.

  • http://www.myspace.com/freedmusic fredd

    @Ken … so damn agree with you

    Melo will answer back for sure … he’s mature … and has an opportunity to show it with a big game three

  • http://myspace.com/mcnarrative Kieran

    Dont you giys use ad block?

  • http://myspace.com/mcnarrative Kieran

    Dont you guys use ad block?

  • http://slamonline.com Brad Long

    Rex better hope Denver doesn’t end up playing the Lakers if he thinks Utah was playing “dirty” last night. He might try to file assault charges when Ron-Ron d’s him up.

  • UnRel

    denver plays pretty dirty themselves.. but what bothered me last night.. is all the complaining.. i understand when the person who was called for a foul complains.. but for his teammate far away from the play complains.. it gets annoying to watch.. you can’t play ‘hard/dirty/tough’ and also complain.. it doesn’t make sense to me..

  • Ronald

    Utah definitely were bodying up Melo all game. But the Nugs did the same thing to D-Will. For part of the game I thought Deron was playing off-ball considering how much they were fronting and denying him.

  • http://4Aitkenroad,Hamilton,ScotlandML37YA Hambone

    bring back the screamin jordan ad

  • JD

    Utah beat Denver in 5

  • matt

    matt was never a great defender, but he sure tried. i’m glad the jazz tried hard last night–that’s the point.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Last game Melo’s jumper was falling.
    When that’s falling, he’s unguardable. This game he was trying to much to force his way to the rim. When he bullies people, he creates so much contact that the refs are going to call both offensive and defensive fouls. I mean, he shot 16 free throws, and the Jazz were often in the bonus.
    Melo has to find that balance between using the pull up and forcing his way to the bucket.

  • Ryan Mitchell

    I didn’t see anyone from the Jazz pull Mello to the ground on a flagrant foul. Maybe if the Nuggets quit cryin to the refs they would have pulled it off.

  • MikeC.

    Melo should force a trade to the Knicks. Dick Bavetta will let him do whatever he wants. He won’t even have to dribble any more, unless he wants to.

  • RayRay20

    lol @ this… melo just had an off shooting night. He will be back to his normal self.

    I smell another 40+ game coming from him lol.. Denver’s going to take it.

  • http://stapledesign.com Spaceship Jay

    Melo’s always been physical player, depending on the guys agression to use it against the opposing player. Matt’s just found a way to counter it, that’s all. Melo’s gonna set them on fire regardless. Good for Matt.

  • MF

    Melo to the knicks in 2011

  • ab_40

    Melo is gonna go off in utah. nugs in 5

  • http://soundcloud.com/boy-sanchez Boy Sanchez

    @ Michael Scorn: I totally agree with you man… I once accidentally rolled my mouse over the add and I thought my speakers were broken…

  • http://nuggetsnation.proboards.com/index.cgi clapzilla

    @Ryan, The Jazz Were Crying Just As Much As The Nuggets. Harpring Is Pushing A Myth That Melo Can Be Rattled. The Best Defense Against Him Is To Suffocate Him From Halfcourt On And Take Away His Vision When He Shoots. Doesn’t Always Work Because It Leads To FTs And Melo Can Score For 40 Minutes Just By Posting Up, But Teams Can Live With That If The Effort Is There. Sorta What Harpring Said, But Its Not All About Being Physical And Trying To Get In His Head.

  • Todd

    i just wanna see thing whining go away. from both teams.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Jazz are awesome. My new favorite team next to the Thunder this playoffs.

  • http://www.twitter.com/retepadam RetepAdam


    The Carmelo’s People of Utah ad deserves more press.

  • Will

    go nugs!

  • chintao

    Outside of ‘Melo himself, only the zebras can stop #15. Carmelo just needs to keep maintainin’ and stop complainin’ (thanks, Clyde).

  • chintao

    Teddy is a closet Mormon?

  • http://www.euroleagueadventures.com Nick Gibson

    Don’t you just hate when people suggest basketball should be physical? As if it’s a contact sport or something. And Matt Harpring>Michael Jordan. Word aaap.

  • JoeMaMa

    The Dwyane Wade ad convinced me never to buy a product from him again. Worst ad ever.
    Boycott wack ads.

  • http://www.bluefont.com Hisham

    I was kinda hoping that the Jazz had put Harpring on the playoff roster as some kind of injury exception late addition.

  • iLL wiLL

    Harpring is a G.

  • http://nicekicks.com CharmeloMan

    The refs are horrible, Melo gets bodied up so much when he has the ball and doesn’t get calls (he shuda shot 20 freethrows that game) yet when he does it back to them he gets a foul?? smh

  • FunkDoktor Spokk

    Melo is not well liked by the NBA, just tolerated. Since february,when he popped that jumper in Lebrons mug and sent lebron to the lockerroom crying, Melo has seen his fouls go up and foul shot attempts go down, as well as his scoring average.

    LEBRON is the NBA’s designated marquee marketing guy and they don’t want Melo muckin up the works. They have gone out of their way to make Melo look mortal these last few weeks.

    4 offensive fouls in a row? on an AllStar!?!?!NEVER have I seen that.

    NBA condones it. They would make a big stink about it if they didn’t. It affects outcomes of games. NBA is Dead.