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LakerMania
03-21-2004, 03:08 PM
http://www.denverpost.com/Stories/0,1413,36~90~2031902,00.html


Anthony apologizes to Nuggets

Refusal to return vs. Pistons at issue

By Marc J. Spears
Denver Post Sports Writer

MINNEAPOLIS - The day after refusing to play in the final stretch of a loss Friday night at Detroit, Nuggets rookie forward Carmelo Anthony apologized to his team.

Twice Friday night Anthony felt his teammates challenged his shot selection. After the second challenge Anthony said he would not go back into the game after a timeout with 6:16 remaining in the fourth quarter and the Nuggets trailing 83-68. The Pistons went on to win 94-75.


The Nuggets' leading scorer apologized Saturday during a film session at the team hotel, met privately with some teammates and then answered questions about the incident with The Denver Post.

"I apologized for quitting," said Anthony after Saturday's 45-minute practice at the Target Center, where the Nuggets play Minnesota today. "That's not me. That's not me. ... I never did that a day in my life."

General manager Kiki Vandeweghe said Saturday he had not talked to Anthony but did not plan to fine him. Vandeweghe was sympathetic to Anthony.

"Just about every great player gets frustrated at different times," Vandeweghe said. "It's a learning experience. People have got to realize he's a 19-year-old playing at the highest level. He's going to be frustrated.

"That's not something disruptive. It's part of the growing process. Just about every great player goes through it every once in a while."

Coach Jeff Bzdelik said he considered the issue closed after Anthony apologized. The Nuggets are trying to hold on to the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

"He is a terrific young man who has shouldered a lot of responsibility," Bzdelik said. "He was man enough to acknowledge to his teammates that he made a mistake. Now we move on. What is important is what lies ahead.

"To be honest with you, we wouldn't be where we are today if it weren't for this young man."

The first shot-selection challenge came during a first-quarter timeout when Anthony and center Marcus Camby exchanged words after Anthony missed two 18-foot jump shots. The second challenge came during the fourth-quarter timeout when guard Andre Miller voiced concern about the Nuggets taking bad shots. Anthony's misses on a 17-foot jumper and a 3-pointer before the timeout led to Detroit baskets.

Anthony finished with 20 points on 9-of-20 shooting and missed his three 3-point attempts. He is averaging a team-best 20.6 points on 42.8 percent shooting.

"I was just thinking, 'Why now? Why now?"' Anthony said about being second-guessed. "I think sometimes everybody gets caught up in the moment. Marcus doesn't ever complain about nothing. He said what he had to say, I took it in and I kept on playing. But once you've got everybody questioning your shot selection ...

"Everybody was just coming down on me. That's all I heard. When I came to the huddle I could hear everyone saying, 'We're shooting ourselves in the foot.' It was just building up."

After Anthony said he would not play, a shocked Bzdelik twice tried to change his mind before replacing Anthony with forward Rodney White. Assistant John MacLeod and Miller also spoke to Anthony during the timeout.

"He's young. You've just got to play through it," Miller said. "We've got to win some games. It's a team game and we got to stick together. That's what I told him.

"Nobody's upset with how he is playing. In order for us to be successful, we need for him to be aggressive."

The third pick in the 2003 draft remained on the bench for the rest of the game with a towel draped over his head.

Anthony said if he had gone back in, he "probably wouldn't have been the same because I was so rattled at the time." He added that he would not point fingers at someone "when things get thick" and he was not a selfish ballplayer.

"Frustration just took over," he said. "It totally took over me (Friday). I thought I was playing good. I was out there trying to do anything. And for someone to reward me with I'm shooting too much? It just gets frustrating."

Said Camby: "He'll be OK (today). He got 20 (shots). We're going to him. With that comes responsibility."



First crying about AK making the AS team, now this. Might sway some decision as to whether or not he should be co-rookie of the year.

Max Power
03-21-2004, 04:33 PM
I'm sure that tempers are flaring in Denver. They've went 4-7 since the Laker game was stolen from them. It's tough for a young team to keep it together sometimes.

MavKikiNYC
03-21-2004, 04:39 PM
Punk.

mavsman55
03-21-2004, 04:40 PM
Sounds like we've got another Allen Iverson on our hands.

Absolutely ridiculous. Melo is good, without a doubt, but he's a rookie. He should never try and take over his team as a rookie. He needs to learn to take advice from his teammates, because when it all boils down, he is a rookie and they have more experience than him. They know what's best. He's just another crybaby, no better than the rest of them, unless he actually meant that apology and turns things around from here. He'll just have to prove himself the rest of the way down the stretch now.

Bayliss
03-21-2004, 05:36 PM
I don't know how good LeBron is going to be but Melo is as good as you seeing him right now.

Glenn Robinson Part II.

dirno2000
03-21-2004, 07:01 PM
Just on physical ability alone, he's better then Glen Robinson. He'll be a 25+ ppg scorer for years to come.

aexchange
03-21-2004, 11:46 PM
glen robinson coming into the league was an offensive machine.

injuries and adding too much bulk have robbed him of any speed and quickness.

bayliss is exactly on point about him being glenn robinson part ii.

Murphy3
03-22-2004, 12:17 AM
It's good to see him at least apologizing for his screw up. That alone sets him apart from Allen Iverson.

grbh
03-22-2004, 09:27 AM
I'm inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt. He has admitted his transgression, and I think a lot of us forget he is still a kid.

19 is not a man. At 19 it is not easy task to play in the NBA and lead a team.

dirno2000
03-22-2004, 09:41 AM
Originally posted by: aexchange
glen robinson coming into the league was an offensive machine.

injuries and adding too much bulk have robbed him of any speed and quickness.

bayliss is exactly on point about him being glenn robinson part ii.

Robinson was an offensive machine in college, but never in the NBA. He was able to score at will in college mainly because he was a big perimeter player with pretty good handles and there aren't many of those in the college ranks. Even at Purdue he wasn't quick. As far as injuries, he played in almost every game his first three seasons and his numbers didn't really improve much.

Carmello is quicker and more explosive than Robinson has ever been, which is going to allow him to consistently get good looks in the NBA, something Robinson has never been able to do. Also keep in mind that Robinson was at Purdue for 3 years (Prop 48), while Carmello is just a year out of high school.

I just don't know what you guys are looking at in Carmello's game that would cause you to say, "he can't get any better". Paul Pierce was a 6'7 swingman too; why not compare him to Paul Piece or T-Mac for that matter? Those are much better comparisons.

WayOutWest
03-22-2004, 11:51 AM
Originally posted by: grbh
19 is not a man. At 19 it is not easy task to play in the NBA and lead a team.

Excellent point.

Not too mention Melo said he was rattled at that point, he probably wouldn't have been any good in the game anyway. I'm not making excuses for the guy but I know at age 19 I'd get rattled in games if things weren't going well and my team mates got on me. When I was 19 I played in a b-ball league in East L.A. that was sponsered by the Hollenbeck police dept. There was only one other 19 year old and some 6'8 HS kid the rest were either cops or people the cops put arrested. We'd play in front of each others friends and family and that was tough enough as a 19 year old I could imagine playing on the stage Melo has to deal with.

Melo has made the stupidest and most arrogant comments I've ever heard from anyone let alone a rookie make but I'll chalk it up to youth and cut him some slack until next year.

WayOutWest
03-22-2004, 12:00 PM
Originally posted by: dirno2000
I just don't know what you guys are looking at in Carmello's game that would cause you to say, "he can't get any better". Paul Pierce was a 6'7 swingman too; why not compare him to Paul Piece or T-Mac for that matter? Those are much better comparisons.

I think comparrisons to Glen are legit, Paul Pierce is also a good comparison but not T-Mac. T-Mac is way more athletic than any of them, he's just on a totally different level in that regard.

Glen has the luxury of a very good outside shot, that forced people to play him close and despite not being overwhelmingly quick, he's quick enough to get by most people who play him that close. Same with Pierce but P is alot tougher going to the rim. Big Dog was stricktly finesse, P can get rough and tough when he needs to and force contact and trips to the line.

Melo IMO doesn't have their touch, yet, from the outside so people back off him a bit but Melo is quicker than both those guys and get by alot of people. Melo is also more athletic than both but that will diminish with age. Hopefully Melo's outside shot will improve and he won't need to rely on his quickness as much.

I see a little bit of a young Mark Aguire in Melo as well.

kg_veteran
03-22-2004, 01:00 PM
If we're talking statistically, the Big Dog comparison is a pretty fair one at this point. From a pure comparison standpoint, Pierce is probably the fairer comparison, although Carmelo still has quite a ways to go to become the defender Pierce is.

I don't really see the Aguirre thing, because Carmelo's not close to the scorer Mark was, especially in the post.

Male30Dan
03-22-2004, 01:08 PM
For Melo's size, (6'8, 220) and with the amount of work he does under the basket, he should definitely rebound better than he does... I think expecting around 7.5-8.5 out of him is definitely understandable...

His head just doesnt seem to be in the game unless he is working to score... Sometimes it looks like he has no passion, or that he is lost and waiting to shoot again... For those very reasons I would compare him to Robinson more so than to Pierce, (because as KG pointed out, Pierce has his head in the game on both sides of the court).

WayOutWest
03-22-2004, 02:18 PM
Originally posted by: kg_veteran
If we're talking statistically, the Big Dog comparison is a pretty fair one at this point. From a pure comparison standpoint, Pierce is probably the fairer comparison, although Carmelo still has quite a ways to go to become the defender Pierce is.

I don't really see the Aguirre thing, because Carmelo's not close to the scorer Mark was, especially in the post.

I said "young" Aguire. The older version was very good in the post, Melo could be as well.

How about Reggie Theus? Suspect outside shot but he could get to the hoop effectively despite his lack of explosive speed.

dirno2000
03-22-2004, 03:00 PM
Dan, I expect his rebounding to improve, but 6 boards per game isn't bad for a small forward. Especially when you consider that he's fighting with Camby, Nene and a good rebounding pg in Miller for boards.


I think comparisons to Glen are legit, Paul Pierce is also a good comparison but not T-Mac. T-Mac is way more athletic than any of them, he's just on a totally different level in that regard.

T-Mac may be more athletic, but the gap isn't as big as you're making it out to be
http://www.nba.com/media/act_carmelo_anthony.jpg
Robinson didn't have this kind of explosion or athleticism on his best day.

Also, His outside shot if fine. Few rookies come into the NBA with ready made jump shots. The ones that do find that good looks are harder to come by (see Trejan Langdon).

Mark my words, this guy is going to be a consistent 25ppg scorer in this league.

Male30Dan
03-22-2004, 03:36 PM
Dirno,

Melo plays more minutes than any other Nugget, (especially when compared to Camby). He also plays with his back to the basket quite a bit. I know that he is listed as a SF, but he plays like a PF a good bit of the time... With all of his work around the basket, you can see his 2.3 offensive boards shows he can rebound. But on the defensive glass, he just doenst bring it enough... If you watch many Nugget games, you will see him start breaking when a shot is missed in hopes that someone else will board and pass it to him so that he can score...

Im sorry for the knock on an obviously talented player, but to me, the guy is too damn one dimensional for my taste... When he ups his boards about 2 per game and plays some consistent defense, he will be knocking on the star door in my opinion... Until then, he is just another 20 point scorer...

kg_veteran
03-22-2004, 04:33 PM
WOW - I like the Theus comparison.

Dirno - That's possible, but I'll believe it when I see it. Right now I think he's more of a consistent 20 ppg guy, with potential improvements coming defensively, on the boards, and handling the ball.

aexchange
03-23-2004, 12:41 PM
Originally posted by: Male22Dan
Dirno,

Melo plays more minutes than any other Nugget, (especially when compared to Camby). He also plays with his back to the basket quite a bit. I know that he is listed as a SF, but he plays like a PF a good bit of the time... With all of his work around the basket, you can see his 2.3 offensive boards shows he can rebound. But on the defensive glass, he just doenst bring it enough... If you watch many Nugget games, you will see him start breaking when a shot is missed in hopes that someone else will board and pass it to him so that he can score...

Im sorry for the knock on an obviously talented player, but to me, the guy is too damn one dimensional for my taste... When he ups his boards about 2 per game and plays some consistent defense, he will be knocking on the star door in my opinion... Until then, he is just another 20 point scorer...


a lot of the same criticisms can be made about dirk...