Carmelo Anthony’s hamstring injury he suffered in the 111-110 loss to the L.A. Clippers dealt another blow to the Los Angeles Lakers in an extremely unlucky 2021-22 season.
Anthony has been one of L.A.’s most reliable players during the current campaign, impressing with his durability and stable form. Until the Thursday loss to the Clippers, the 37-year-old had missed just three games — averaging 13.6 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 1.1 assists in 26.9 minutes over 49 appearances.
Meanwhile, the Purple and Gold’s other stars have been sliding in and out of the rotation throughout the season. LeBron James has already missed 17 games in 2021-22; Anthony Davis has been sidelined for 21 clashes.
The hamstring strain did cause Anthony to sit out the overtime win over the New York Knicks. But head coach Frank Vogel confirmed earlier reports on the forward’s health, saying initial evaluation examination showed the injury wasn’t serious.
“Melo was evaluated,” Vogel said. “We’re encouraged what we saw tonight, but he’ll be day-to-day.”
Further confirmation that Anthony’s injury is not too serious is that he was out on the floor before the Knicks game getting some shots up:
Carmelo out here getting some shooting in. Frank Vogel said earlier that he’s day-to-day. pic.twitter.com/meXeEihDTX
— Daniel Starkand (@DStarkand) February 6, 2022
Anthony enjoyed a fine form right before suffering the injury. The veteran sharpshooter scored 24 points to help L.A. beat the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday and snap the Lakers’ three-game losing streak.
Anthony shot 8-for-12 (66.7%) from the field and 5-for-6 (83.3%) from downtown, ending the night with a team-high +15.
Vogel and Davis believe Anthony deserves more credit
Anthony has undeniably been one of the pillars of the Lakers’ offense this season, providing the much-needed firepower as the leader of the second unit.
But Davis and Vogel said the experienced forward’s impact on L.A. goes beyond his input on the offensive end.
“He’s been a voice in the locker room, a voice on the floor and the way he’s still able to score the basketball, and guys try to pick on him in the paint on the defensive end but the way he talks and reads defenses where he can kind of manipulate the game, which I think that part of his game is underrated,” Davis.
And Vogel added, speaking after the 99-94 win over the Trail VBilazers: “LeBron [James] gets a lot of credit for what he’s doing in Year 19 and I don’t think people are talking about what Carmelo is doing in Year 19. It really is remarkable. He was terrific tonight like AD said.”
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