Former Knick Carmelo Anthony reacts to returning to MSG, getting cheers
Carmelo Anthony has made a few trips back to Madison Square Garden since being traded by the New York Knicks in 2017, but their New Year’s Day tussle as a member of the Portland Trail Blazers is treated as a special occasion that trumps even his first game back ever.
“The love was definitely felt tonight. From the fans that was here, just the city as a whole, just being back. I think that feeling is hard to explain but for me to get that kind of ovation, I think I’ve always had that love from the city. To be back in this building where I spent so many years, that love felt extremely good tonight.”
Carmelo Anthony says it was special to be back in New York and to get a loud ovation from Knicks fans:
"The love was definitely felt tonight" pic.twitter.com/gkUDNmCbAs
— Knicks Videos (@sny_knicks) January 2, 2020
Carmelo Anthony finished the night with a season-high 26 points on probably one of the more efficient outings in his career as he shot the ball at a blistering 64.7-percent (as well as 60-percent from behind the arc), turned the ball over only once, and added seven boards. Of course, the 6-foot-8 swingman would have traded all of that away for the victory as the Blazers were blown out in a match that wasn’t close.
Still, it’s a bittersweet moment for the former Knicks mainstay as just a few months ago no one knew if he would ever return to The Association as almost every team has passed on giving him a chance except for the injury-plagued Blazers squad.
Anthony now hopes that this reception could lead to bigger things such as possibly getting his jersey retired, but that’s likely a conversation in the distant future that starts once he finally hangs it for good.