Mike Woodson took a shot at Carmelo Anthony’s recent critics who still are nitpicking at his game despite an MVP-type season as leader of the Eastern Conference’s second seed.
A prominent Boston columnist has twice in a week lambasted Anthony as being a “overrated ballhog’’ – bizarre timing considering his spectacular play since returning from knee drainage procedure in late March.
“Me personally I really don’t care about what other people think,’’ Woodson said in today’s conference call with the Knicks up 2-0. “Those people are not around Carmelo every day. I see Carmelo every day. I know the work the young man has put in as a player. A lot of these people probably never played basketball in their life. Making comments that he’s not committed? I think he’s damn committed. He’s been that way since I took over the team. I like everything about him. I think his teammates love him. I think our fans love what he’s brought to the team this year. Only time will tell.’’
Anthony has scored 36 and 34 points, respectively, in the first two wins over Boston, and hasn’t even found a perfect rhythm yet. He lit up Boston for 13 points in the third quarter last night to key the Knicks pulling away during a 32-11 period.
Earlier today on his radio show, Woodson raved about Anthony’s offseason setting the stage for his MVP bid. He likely will lose to LeBron James but still could get runner-up after edging Kevin Durant in the scoring title race.
“The commitment Melo has made to himself, the organization and teammates has been like no other commitment,’’ Woodson said. “He’s played at a high level all year. It started at the Olympics and carried over to the development program. Vet camp was great. It carried over into the regular. He’s hungry to win a title. His game has benefitted from the hard work he put in. I’m marveling at some of the things he’s done.’’