Everything was lined up for Carmelo Anthony a few months ago. Ditched by the Thunder after underperforming last season, Melo headed to a Houston Rockets team that was 27 consecutive missed threes away from an NBA finals birth. For the Rockets, Melo was ideally going to be “Olympic Melo,” a legendary figure that appeared in open gym videos on Twitter and every four years during international competition. For Anthony, it was a chance at career redemption on a hyper-talented team alongside two future Hall of Famers.
Tracy McGrady's advice to Carmelo Anthony? Retire.
Do you think Melo should kiss the game goodbye?https://t.co/QVB9VKC5Ju
— Basketball Society (@BBallSociety_) November 19, 2018
What happened instead was the continuation of Carmelo’s fossilization. A vicious concoction of dwindling physical talents and the inability to escape his patented iso to low efficiency shot attempt possessions. While Anthony holds promise as a catch and shoot specialist, he simply was not efficient. His 32% mark from three is his lowest since 2009. Never known as a defensive stopper, teams have routinely attacked Anthony offensively, taking advantage of his slow feet and poor lateral agility. After 10 games, the Rockets decided to end the experiment for the greater good.
Melo’s decline is reminiscent of another ill-fated Hall of Fame career. Allen Iverson bounced around between NBA cities in a painfully pitiful effort to remain an alpha dog despite waning efficiency and abilities. The 11-time All-Star’s career unceremoniously ended after refusing to take a bench role for the Pistons in 2009. Confidence is an admirable quality, but only when it doesn’t closely resemble delusion.
Have we seen the last of Carmelo Anthony in an NBA uniform? That will likely depend on his attitude going forward. Hit the link to check out the latest Just My Take, where I discuss how Melo got to this point and what happens next for one of the greatest scorers of all time.