Carmelo Anthony is entering his 19th NBA season, this time with the Los Angeles Lakers, in hopes of getting his first NBA championship. An NBA title is the most significant achievement that Carmelo missed out on so far in his career, so him joining forces with his friend LeBron James brings hopes he can conclude his HOF career with a championship ring. Ever since becoming an NBA player, playing in the NBA Finals alluded Carmelo, but this time, he is hoping to make that happen with the Lakers.
In a recent interview for Million Dollaz Worth of Game podcast, Carmelo talked about his early years in the NBA and how his relationship with Michael Jordan helped him adapt to the big league. A lot of fans might not remember that the Air Jordan brand signed Carmelo as soon as he came to the NBA, which meant a lot for him because he knew Jordan had his back.
So I went to Mike early in my career, and I was a kid from Baltimore who knew how to go there and get it. I was green, but I knew how to go and get it. For him to sign me at 19 years old to represent his brand meant a lot. So when I signed with him, I knew he had my back for him to take that chance with me.Carmelo Anthony, via MILLION DOLLAZ WORTH OF GAME
Like any rookie in the NBA, Carmelo needed some time to properly adapt to being a professional and becoming a great player. That is why he turned to Jordan for advice and spent some time with him to pick his brain and learn the essential tips and tricks to become a dominant player. Carmelo learned from Jordan that using his basketball IQ while studying the opposing teams and players would help him achieve the ultimate advantage over them in games.
I was having a hard time with certain players in the game, certain situations in the game figuring how to beat certain defenses. So I went to MJ for that. I spent a week and a half with MJ in Chicago. We trained every morning, 6:30 in the morning. It was more about the conversations that we had. The way he broke film down to me because I didn’t know how to watch film. He broke it down to me and questioned me. He taught me how to break down the art of scoring the basketball. He gave me the mental part of it. I’m thinking about what he is telling me. I ain’t have to go get it as much as I really want to go get it as fast as I want to get it. You just slow the game down, and that was probably the best advice that he ever gave me.Carmelo Anthony, via MILLION DOLLAZ WORTH OF GAME
We’ve rarely seen Carmelo openly speak about his relationship with Jordan, and it seems he made quite an impact on him early on in his career. Jordan also took Kobe under his wing and saw the same potential in Carmelo when he decided to sign him at such a young age for the Air Jordan brand. Carmelo definitely utilized a lot of the advice Jordan gave him, and for a few years, he was one of the best players in the world, especially on the offensive of the floor.
However, Carmelo’s career took a different turn. After almost being out of the league because teams no longer trusted him and his value as a player decreased, Carmelo proved he belongs and is now ready to achieve the ultimate prize, an NBA title with the Lakers.