Carmelo Anthony continues providing value for the Los Angeles Lakers in his 19th season in the NBA, going off for 24 points in the 113-101 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Anthony ended the clash with just two points less than LeBron James’ game-high 26. The 37-year-old forward barely missed in over 25 minutes on the floor, shooting 9-for-12 (75%) from the field and 6-for-8 (75%) from behind the 3-point line.
That was the second time this season Anthony came off the bench to carry the Lakers’ offense. Last week, the 10-time All-Star scored a game-high 28 points in the 121-118 win over the Memphis Grizzlies, L.A.’s first victory of the season. James said the veteran forward’s presence on the floor is a blessing for other Lakers stars.
“A threat. He’s a sniper,” the four-time NBA champion said when asked what Anthony adds to the roster.
“What we call in our league, guys that don’t need much airspace to get it off because it’s a quick trigger,” James continued. “It creates so much space for myself, Russ, and AD to work our pick and roll magic. When you have guys like Melo and guys that can space the floor, you can keep guys honest on the perimeter.”
Anthony Davis had difficulty finding the appropriate words for the phenomenon that is Anthony’s ability to find his rhythm on offense, allowing him to launch a barrage of 3s.
“He’s old. I just saw Bron shoots more threes now. Some stat … something crazy, I don’t know,” he said. “I mean, when Melo gets going, it just opens up the floor for our team. He get hot quick as you guys can see.”
Davis added the Lakers happily feed Anthony the ball once they recognize he is in the groove.
“When he gets going, he hits two in a row we know he’s hot and we try to find him and when he shoot it, it’s such a quick release we know it’s going in. Especially when he just shoot it and his arms don’t come straight down and he just holds his follow-through, we just know it’s going in.
“But it’s just a momentum booster for us, just like a dunk. It’s like Bron shooting his 60-footers. Dwight [Howard] getting a huge block. I’m getting a dunk, Russ is getting a dunk. It’s just momentum plays. That’s just momentum plays for us and it gets us going.”
Davis pays respect to Anthony’s illustrious career
When Anthony passed Moses Malone into ninth on the NBA’s all-time scoring list in the victory over Memphis, Davis couldn’t contain his excitement over his older teammate’s performance. The 28-year-old All-Star said he has always been a fan of Anthony’s game — and then paid respect to his illustrious career.
“[T]o come in and do what he’s doing in the 19th year when a couple years ago nobody wanted him, he was counted out, he was doubted and he stayed the course,” Davis said.
“He stayed a professional and got a shot in Portland and made a name for himself again and then he’s here now doing the same thing, picking up where he left off.”
Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!