Wednesday, July 25th, 2012 at 11:00 am  |  28 responses

Carmelo Anthony Says International Hoops Allow Him to Be More Versatile

Melo was one of the MVPs for Team USA in their victory over Spain last night, as he continued to carve out a stellar international basketball legacy. According to Anthony, FIBA play lets him showcase more skills than his NBA gig does. Per SheridanHoops: “These Americans can shoot it, and Anthony’s 5-for-8 shooting from 3-point range led a 13-for-23 performance from the arc. ‘Carmelo is as versatile of a guy after LeBron as we have,’ coach Mike Krzyzewski said. Indeed, Anthony played at the 3, 4 and 5 positions, and LeBron James spent more time defending Pau Gasol than did starting center Tyson Chandler (five fouls and two points in 8 minutes). Kevin Love also had his best game of this summer with 9 rebounds in 13 minutes, spending some of his time on Serge Ibaka and Gasol. Anthony (27 points) and James (25 points) were named co-MVPs of the game. If there was a lesson to be learned from this final exhibition, it is that although the Americans are vertically challenged – to put it politely – they are also a matchup nightmare for opposing big men who are unaccustomed to playing perimeter defense. James plays some center for Team USA. Anthony plays some center. Love plays some center. Kevin Durant plays some 4. All of them can drain it from deep. […] In two weeks, maybe Anthony will be back to loving FIBA basketball the way he once did. ‘I don’t like it better than NBA basketball. I play NBA basketball, that’s my career, that’s my life blood,’ Anthony said. ‘But FIBA basketball allows me to play multiple positions and do a lot of different things out there on the basketball court than I do in the NBA. I’m in a different position, I play the 3, the 4, the 5. I don’t play the 5 back in the NBA. Over here, with these guys on the team, it’s more playing off of them, doing some dirty work, when the ball comes to you trying to knock down shots, rebounding. Most of the times I’m playing against 4s and 5s, and it’s a much more physical game than in the NBA. I won’t be playing the 5 in New York, I know that. But this whole experience, every time I come back and play USA basketball, my mindset is a lot different. The team-oriented atmosphere I bring back to my team, the focus I have, my conditioning, and carrying that into the regular season, it’s like I’m getting an early start. Look at what happened the year after we won the gold medal. In 2009 I had one of my best seasons with Denver and we went to the Western Conference finals. My body felt great, my mind felt great – and that’s something I keep in the back of my mind coming out of USA Basketball.’”

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  • LA Huey

    Basketball is at its best when everyone is capable of playing multiple positions. I felt Spain’s size advantage was overblown.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Nick Tha Quick

    Interesting stat I saw the other day: USA has been outscored 116-115 by opponents when neither Kevin Love nor Chandler are on the floor in the 4 exhibition games prior to yesterday.

  • Basketball_iQ

    We definitely have a matchup advantage when it comes to speed but it was close for a while bc spain didn’t have good pg play.. The pressure we apply whole court wore down those guys who normally would backup rubio. It’d be more fun if he was playing but with no marc gasol, there true size advantage was missing. Still interesting non the less

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Melo take this same attitude to the Knicks, so you can get a playoff series win in NY.

  • T-Money

    i watched the replay last night on nba tv and it was hilarious to watch pau gasol try to get the ball on the block with bron just sitting on him and backpedalling him out of the court. do some squats, pau! lol

  • LA Huey

    LBJ apparently checked Pau most of the time. Chandler won’t have a problem with fouls if he’s checking Marc. USA’s speed is more of an advantage than their lack of size is a disadvantage.
    Seed: I feel the Knicks would be at their best playing Melo at the 4. However, neither Tyson or Amare are humble enough to come take fewer minutes or versatile enough to play on the perimeter.

  • LA Huey

    T-Money, so NBA TV is hogging the replay rights to these exhibitions? No wonder I couldn’t catch them on ESPN3 after they originally aired.

  • http://www.newyorkshockexchange.com Shock Exchange

    “International Hoops Allow Him to be More Versatile” INTERPRETATION: With all this talent on Team USA, I don’t need to lead … all I have to do is shoot.

  • bike

    KLove seems to feel the exact opposite.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    LA Huey: I like Melo’s game and playing him at the 4 for a smaller line up will be good, Kidd, Smith, Brewer, Melo and Amare or Chandler.

  • Sean B

    I like what he said about “remember what happened after we won Gold in 2008.” I feel like Carmelo is a top 10 player in this league but he does not always carry himself in that manner. I hope he has a monster season because the Knicks are much more talented than a 7th seed in the East.

  • Bill

    By “versatile” he means not a black hole.

  • http://slamonline.com Chinese Oppenheimer

    Its true. Wade and melo had outstanding seasons in 09. Melo owned kobe in that series, that’s why lobe cried for ron, after ron himself was owning lobes.

  • B.Plump

    His best games were in Syracuse. My best memories of Carmelo are in college. He was a monster. Rebound, passing, scoring… NBA lost him.

  • SeanMagicJuan

    Until Melon shaves his BPI on half, he’ ll never even contend for a ring. He has come into many a training camp in horrible condition

  • SeanMagicJuan

    * Melo.

  • Brahsef

    I really like watchin Bron and Melo play together. They play off each other so well

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgvwfvTcNl0 danpowers

    interesting that he mentions that international play is more physical than nba basketball. what has the league come to? i hope that there will be a bit of backpedaling from calling flagrants so easy and please mr stern, bring handchecking back to the l

  • LA Huey

    What’s “BPI”? Were you referring to his Blood Pressure Index or is that the name of Melo’s style of facial hair?

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgvwfvTcNl0 danpowers

    @LA Huey: some strange shortcut for facial hair. it might be a local accent or something

  • http://www.slamonline.com melvin ely

    The main reason they did so well after the 08 olympics is because chauncey was there to cover his a$$. He’s never been successful being the sole leader of a team, and we’re talking about a cat who’s been in the L 10 years.

  • LA Huey

    danpowers, he said Carmelo had to shave his BPI.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgvwfvTcNl0 danpowers

    @melvin ely: basketball is a teamsport. not even jordan wouldve won a chip without a good team to back him up. guys like ray allen, david robinson, nowitzki, kidd or gary payton won their chip very late in their carreers, does that make them loosers? i dont think so. even guys who never won a chip like malone or ewing wont be considered losers by anyone who understands the game. melo didnt have escapades that cost him seasons or worse got him out of the L like artest, spree, arenas, kemp, iverson (as much as i love these guys…). dont get this kind of crying about anthonys achievements. i guess it is what it is, like the us americans say “haters gotta hate”. (and yup, im of the oppinion that hate is a strong word n most people here who use it dont know what hate really means)

  • DruNyce

    Haters are going to hate. While Melo keeps doin’ work. People love to talk about Denver’s playoffs failures. Lets acknowledge that they failed to surround him with a team better than LA or SA.

  • downtown_brownclown

    Oh well, Melo will always have doubters. but his game says it all. looking forward to a better season for the knicks. NBA Finals? it’s open season. :)

  • Wendy

    Interesting. In Team USA, Melo doesn’t get to play “Iso-Melo” like on the Knicks.

    Which brings us to the reason why Linsanity has stopped in New York. Well, as a Rocketsfan, I’m glad.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgvwfvTcNl0 danpowers

    i think that teams scouted lin more to exploit his offensive flaws was more the reason that linsanity ended

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgvwfvTcNl0 danpowers

    plus i dont think that the saga will continue in houston. from a competative and marketing standpoint houston was a step into the wrong direction for lin. he will miss the knicks and ny way more than the knicks will miss him. im sad that he left though and hope that he finds a way to become or stay a star in houston, i just highly doubt that. i wonder if the 5 mio. more were worth it for lin (which i also highly doubt).