Ding Dong, the streak is dead! Nate the Great has done it again, giving Knicks guards Da Bizness to the tune of 35 points. The Bulls are going to be a tough out come the postseason, especially with the United Center rocking like the old Chicago Stadium.
So with the Knicks win streak ending at 13 games, we need to take a moment and look at how great Melo is playing in the month of April. Now last night was typical Melo volume scoring, with the 36 points on 34 shots (gunning!). It was the 1st time all month he’s shot under 50% from the field.
He has been NBA Jams style on fire for the whole month until last night. Starting with the easiest 50 point game you’ll ever see on April 2, Melo is averaging 39.8 ppg to go with shooting 56% from the floor. Did I mention he’s shooting 51% on 3’s during this span? The last player to score and shoot at this level was Jordan back in 91-92.
To go along with the avalanche of points, he’s also had 3 double figure rebound games during this 6 game stretch, including 19 last night.
He’s not going to win the league MVP, but I think he’s locked up the player of the month for April. It’ll be the 1st time all season someone other than Lebron will have won the award this season, so he can definitely take pride in that. Plus he and the Knicks are riding a nice wave going into the playoffs, where they hope to win a playoff series for the 1st time since 1999-2000.
So with Lebron having the league MVP award locked up and basically holding claim to the title of Best Player in the NBA, where does Melo rank?
I think the 5 best players in the NBA are Lebron, Kobe, Melo, Durant, and CP3 in that order. Why isn’t Melo higher? Lebron and Kobe do more defensively and definitely are better passers.
Say what you will about Mamba being a ballhog, but he’s averaging 6 assists this season, which would tie a career high. So he can pass, he just feels contested jumpers over 2-3 defenders is better than passing to a wide open Jodie Meeks or Darius Morris.
But when it comes to pure scorers, no one does it like Melo and he’s shown the entire repertoire in April. All jumpers, including 7 3-pointers vs Miami for 50. The next night he plays bully ball inside vs Atlanta and gets 40. A couple of games later, he goes into OKC, on national TV and gives Durant, Sefolosha and whoever else wanted it that work for 36.
Yes, Beast Mode is on and he’s definitely playing his best ball right now, but it’s yet to be seen if this will translate into a playoff series victory.
I’m hoping it does, because we need a Lebron vs Melo Conference Final.