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Carmelo Anthony passes Kobe Bryant with latest game-winner in final seconds

Carmelo Anthony, Blazers, Kobe Bryant

Blazers vet Carmelo Anthony put on a vintage performance on Tuesday against the Toronto Raptors, scoring a season-high 28 points, but none sweeter than the last two he buried with 3.3 seconds left in regulation.

That shot gave the new Portland Trail Blazers gem 17-game-winners in the last five seconds of a game, surpassing Kobe Bryant, who played 20 NBA seasons, according to ESPN Stats & Info.

Anthony has the most game-winners under five seconds since he first entered the league during the hailed 2003-04 season and if looking at the last 30 seconds of a game, he’s topping some of the best names in the past two decades.

The Blazers vet has 26 game-winning field goals in the final 30 seconds of the fourth quarter or overtime periods, the most of any player since his rookie season. More than Kobe Bryant (22), LeBron James (20), Dirk Nowitzki (18) or Dwyane Wade (18).

The 35-year-old’s innate gift for making shots on the clutch showed yet again on Tuesday, as he took a pass from CJ McCollum, drove hard to his left side and pulled up on a dime, as he’s done through most of his career, draping a patented 15-foot pull-up over a late contest from OG Anunoby.

“I thought CJ gave it to me too early,” joked Anthony after the game, according to Casey Holdahl of Blazers.com.

The Blazers only needed to defend one last play before showering Melo with a cold splash during his post-game interview and plenty of praise to follow during the team’s post-game media availability.

Carmelo Anthony and Kobe Bryant have battled against one another multiple times, so to edge the latter in a category as eye-catching as clutch shooting is no small feat.

Since joining the Blazers, Anthony is averaging 16.5 points, 6.0 rebounds, and 1.1 steals through 23 games this season.