Lebron James and Kevin Durant aren’t the only all-around NBA players that can win a scoring title nowadays. Apparently, the most elite players in the league have some competition for the 2013 scoring title and it’s coming from a guy that is starting to do more than just shoot the ball accurately.
Carmelo Anthony, the leader of the New York Knicks, proved on Tuesday evening that he’s an all-around player. As the Knicks faced off against the Washington Wizards, Anthony went off once again. Besides clinching the Atlantic division title, Anthony hasn’t scored less than 20 points since returning from an injury on March 20 and has since led the Knicks to what is now a 13-game win streak.
Anthony’s leadership skills were once questioned as many considered him a pure shooter and nothing else. Though he has never been much of a passer, Anthony showed that he has it in him when he needs it in cases such as against teams like the Wizards. His six assists against the Wizards tied for his third-most assists in a game this year. It may not seem like much, but for a pure shooter, it actually is.
Usually, his teammates Raymond Felton, Pablo Prigioni or Jason Kidd, are usually the ones that are dishing the assists. For some reason, when Anthony passes more often, it gets the rest of the Knicks offense going and it showed, as the team racked up 20 three-point field goals against the Wizards.
Besides Anthony scoring 36 points, five other Knicks players scored in the double-digits. His dynamic scoring and now passing can make the Knicks a true contender for the NBA Championship.
Besides all that offensive stuff, Anthony has gotten the job done on the defensive side of the game as well. Racking up a double-double in the team’s previous two games before the Knicks faced the Wizards, Anthony is showing that he can be the all-around player fans and his team have been looking for since he entered the league.
Now, he’s helped the Knicks win their division title for the first time since the 1995-1996 season. Yeah, it’s been that long. Though James or Durant will probably get the go-ahead in the MVP race, Anthony has proven he is just as good of an all-around player as those two gentlemen.
Joseph Wolkin can be followed on Twitter at @JosephNASCAR.