Northwest Notes: Carmelo, MPJ, SGA, Wolves

Carmelo Anthony‘s NBA career appeared to be on life support after aborted stints in Oklahoma City and Houston in recent years. However, Anthony and the Trail Blazers have brought out the best in one another, Mark Medina of USA Today argues in the wake of Portland’s impressive win over Houston on Tuesday.

“He’s all about the team. He understands what we need from him in certain situations,” Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard said of Anthony. “He knows how the game is going. He knows how to put himself in place to help the team. It’s obvious for somebody like me that pays attention to everything. I find it real funny and disrespectful how people speak on him. He’s a Hall-of-Famer.”

Anthony’s NBA future was in jeopardy following his release from the Rockets due in large part to questions about his defense. Although he hasn’t exactly become a defensive stopper since joining the Trail Blazers, Carmelo hasn’t been a major liability either — the team has an identical defensive rating when he plays and when he sits. As Medina notes, the veteran forward had a key blocked shot on P.J. Tucker late in Tuesday’s game.

“I say everybody who was talking, or said something negative about him, they need to apologize, you know?” Blazers wing Gary Trent Jr. said, per Jason Quick of The Athletic. “It’s Carmelo Anthony. He went through tough times. He battled, stayed resilient and for him to come back and bounce back like it’s nothing? That’s why he’s Carmelo Anthony and why he does what he does.”

Here’s more from around the Northwest:

  • Nuggets forward Michael Porter Jr. followed up a 37-point, 12-rebound performance on Monday with a 30-point, 15-rebound showing on Wednesday, prompting rave reviews from his coach and teammates. As Mike Singer of The Denver Post writes, Michael Malone referred to Porter as a “cornerstone” of the franchise. Meanwhile, injured swingman Will Barton – whom Porter is replacing in the staring lineup – tweeted that the second-year forward is “special,” adding that he “can’t be on a leash with that type (of) ability.”
  • Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is getting more of a chance to run the offense during Dennis Schröder‘s absence from the team, as Joe Mussatto of The Oklahoman observes. While Schröder and Chris Paul have spent most of the time handling the point this season, Gilgeous-Alexander projects to be the team’s long-term point guard.
  • With Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor mulling a sale of the franchise, Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic takes a fascinating, in-depth look at Taylor’s original purchase of the team in 1994, exploring how he helped keep the Wolves in Minnesota.
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8 thoughts on “Northwest Notes: Carmelo, MPJ, SGA, Wolves

  1. KnickerbockerAl

    Happy to see Porter starting to show. Hope he stays healthy. Kid got talent. If he would of came to Knicks. They never would have waited 2yrs for him to show. He would have been pressured to play. Team would have been pressured to play him. Media would have been crying how can he sit for two yrs. Best thing to go to place where you can heal right. He’s still very young. And has his whole career ahead of him. Wish him well.

    • 4Quarters

      Hate to admit it, but you’re spot on about the Knicks. Mills and/or Perry wouldn’t have waited on MPJ.

  2. Sillivan

    Wolves new owners should Draft Ball
    Ball will have more trade value than Zion and Morant after 1 year
    Ball is more like Magic Johnson than Lonzo

    • GABEPERKINS1

      Ball will be a bust.. his numbers playing in Australian were pedestrian.. that’s the same league that bogut won mvp recently.. ball shot 37% and 25% from 3.. wasn’t playing against elite competition.. in Lithuania, could barely get off bench.. now normally age would be a factor however in balls case, he doesn’t play defense and his work ethic is suspect.. he’s not playing against elite completion..

  3. wagner13

    So, because we accurately assessed Carmelo as a replacement-level player the past two seasons and he’s now playing at an average level we need to apologize? Give me a break. Let’s not act like this is some sort of unbelievable turnaround

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      I remember two years ago when Melo went to OKC that Portland’s players thought they would be the best team in the NBA that year if they had gotten him instead. Now that they have him, the Blazers are barely playoff contenders. smh

      • maddog32

        Yeah because losing 3 starters in Hood, Nurkic and Collins due to injury had nothing to do with the Blazers record.

  4. El Don

    I keep sayin’ it MPJ will be an All-Star next season & when all is said & done could very well have been an MVP one day!
    Remember he was the projected #1 pick in a draft with Ayton, MBIII, Doncic, Young, JJJ, Bamba… & so on, this guy is out of this world balling, can’t wait to see the future Nuggets with MPJ & Jokic… unstoppable!

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