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What Carmelo Anthony thought when people told him to sit out Rio

Carmelo Anthony was asked to give a speech to the USA Basketball men’s team, being one of the most experienced players on the roster.

The New York Knicks superstar broke down the goals for the team, and what it would take to bring home a gold medal.

It won’t be a cakewalk, and players will have to sacrifice some things to really make it work. If anything, Team USA has learned the hard way, that meshing a bunch of NBA stars together doesn’t guarantee a gold medal.

They are after all facing the best athletes in the world. Some of them have more time and experience playing with each other, and because there isn’t much time, the players have to do their parts to make sure the other is successful.

The first step was playing against Argentina on Friday night, and the US team did not waste a moment. They quickly jumped to a lead in the first quarter and never looked back. Maybe Anthony’s message sunk in between the speech and the game, and he led the way along with teammate Kevin Durant.

Whether it’s the threat of Zika, or the US not able to send it’s best possible roster, Anthony is still determined to win, and despite people telling him that he should sit this one out, he just couldn’t do it. Prior to the game, Anthony reflected on many of his associates telling him to sit it out,  and addressed the crowd prior to the tip off, per Marc Berman of the New York Post.

Your support means the world to us. We got to do what we got to do and bring home the gold.

A lot of people told me, ‘Don’t do it, don’t do it.’ For what? But I actually enjoy it. I’ve been a part of USA Basketball since I was a junior or senior [in college]. I actually enjoy it, and it’s an opportunity to get another gold medal. I didn’t want to miss that opportunity. And you don’t have to have the same role as on your own team. That’s why guys like playing on the USA team because they don’t have to do as much. They just have a role and rely on everyone else — the best players in the world.

At this time of the year, and during the time of the Olympics, the weather will be in its coldest season, so Anthony later joked about mosquitos not being around in winter.

He has embraced the role of being the leader of the team, and with his growth, Team USA looks to be in good hands.

It’s a new group and batch of guys. I get a chance to go out there and be a leader of the team and lead these guys and enjoy it. It’s about going over there and having fun and getting that fun feeling back and trying to get another gold medal.

We talk about it all the time (regarding 2004). Not from a basketball standpoint, but hearing the rest of the world had caught up to us and we had to regain ourselves; 2004, not just for me personally but as a country, it was a very embarrassing moment

Indeed, Carmelo Anthony is ready to lead USA Basketball back to another gold medal.

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