New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony has had himself a trying season, stuck on a losing team while he puts up big numbers. On Monday he put up 44 points against the Dallas Mavericks at Madison Square Garden, but lost 110-108 after a Dirk Nowitzki buzzer-beater bounced around and fell through the hoop. Anthony was obviously unhappy with the result, via the New York Times' Clifton Brown:
"You score 40, 44, 44, 44, all losses - you kind of ask yourself is it worth it," Anthony said. "I'm not going to stop doing what I'm doing. You can believe that."
The way Anthony felt after Nowitzki made the winning basket mirrored the way he has felt many times this season.
"It's like a needle in a balloon right there, just sucks all the air out you," he said.
It was the Knicks' ninth defeat in their last 11 games, and it dropped them to 21-36, which is good enough for 11th in the East. They are now six games behind the Atlanta Hawks for the eighth spot in the conference, which is the same as the difference between New York and the 15-42 Philadelphia 76ers, a squad that is trying to lose as many games at possible at an organizational level.
"I can't imagine what that's like," Anthony said of missing the playoffs on Saturday, via Al Iannazzone of Newsday. "I'm not even trying to think about that at this point. We still got a lot of basketball to play."
Anthony's 44 points against Dallas came on 14-for-29 shooting, and the other Knicks starters shot 14-for-19. New York once again lost because of poor defense -- the team is 26th the NBA in points allowed per 100 possessions, per Basketball-Reference.
Before the Mavericks game, Anthony had 35 points on 13-for-25 shooting in a loss to the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday. In Orlando the night before that, he scored 44 on 16-for-28 shooting in another loss. Last Wednesday, he had 42 points on 16-for-29 shooting in a win over the New Orleans Pelicans, the team's second win in February. Anthony is averaging 28.2 points, 8.6 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game this season, shooting 45.4 percent from the field and a career-high 42.6 percent on threes.
"The way he's played, it's a damn shame that we're in the position we're in, because our team doesn't deserve [it] and he definitely does not deserve the position that we're in," Woodson said, via ESPN New York.
Anthony's mounting frustration might lead to Knicks fans being nervous that he'll leave in free agency this offseason, but Anthony did say recently that he'd be willing to take less money in order to help New York make other acquisitions.