Carmelo Anthony moves up to 10th on all-time NBA scoring list
Even at 36 years old, 10-time All-Star Carmelo Anthony continues to do his thing for the Portland Trail Blazers. Having resurrected his career in the Pacific Northwest, the former Denver Nuggets top-three pick is playing an important role for a playoff team.
He’s also now reached heights few before him could have scarcely imagined. In fact, only nine players in the entire history of the NBA have scored more points than Carmelo Anthony.
Monday evening against the Atlanta Hawks, Melo passed the great Elvin Hayes for 10th on the all-time NBA scoring list. He did it in fashion with this And-1 from beyond the three-point line against Hawks forward Danilo Gallinari.
Talk about prime Carmelo Anthony right there. He now joins the greatest of all-time on the list of all-time scorers around the Association. It really is a list to behold.
All-time NBA leading scorers: Carmelo Anthony joins the list
Anthony will more than likely pass Moses Malone and Shaq should he play another season in the NBA. Chamberlain is a bit further away, but that’s a possibility.
June 26, 2003: Drafted by the Denver Nuggets in the 1st round (3rd pick) of the 2003 NBA Draft.
Midway through the 2010-11 season, Carmelo was traded to the New York Knicks. While the scene changed from the mountains of Colorado to the streets of New York City, the buckets did not stop as Carmelo rang up points on a nightly basis while calling Madison Square Garden home.
In fact, the scoring rolled on at nearly the exact same pace as it did in Denver. After averaging 24.77 points per game with the Nuggets, Anthony would average 27.72 points per game with the Knicks. His scoring average changed by just 0.05 points per game between his first seven-and-half seasons and his next six-and-a-half season. In total, that’s 14 seasons of consistently being one of the top scorers in the league.
While Carmelo won only a single scoring title in his career (2012-13, 28.7 ppg), he ranked in the top 10 in scoring for nine straight seasons (2005-06 to 2013-14) and finished as the runner up for the scoring title twice in that span.
Following the 2016-17 season, the Knicks traded Anthony to the Oklahoma City Thunder, which essentially began the third phase of Carmelo’s career, which is still going strong in Portland as he is key reserve for a Blazers squad that has won four straight and is looking to climb out of the Play-In Tournament and earn a playoff berth for the eighth straight season.
Carmelo is Portland’s fourth-leading scorer at 13.6 points per game, but was relied upon more heavily earlier in the season while CJ McCollum was sidelined for two months with a foot fracture. Having a reliable veteran scorer that can hit open shots or create looks on his own off the dribble or in the post is a huge asset to have headed into the postseason.
Let’s revisit the list of Hall of Famers that Carmelo has already passed this season and is set to pass this week – Tim Duncan (1997-2016), Dominique Wilkins (1982-99) Oscar Robertson (1960-74) Hakeem Olajuwon (1984-2002) and Elvin Hayes (1968-84). These five players span nearly the entire history of the NBA and represent different positions and eras. But what has made them special is the fact that their talents could have shined in any era of the game. And the same can be said about Carmelo Anthony.
The physicality of previous generations would not have bothered him – Carmelo is one of the strongest wing players in the game. He can play in the post, drive the lane, and finish through contact. He would not have been deterred by hand checking and hard fouls.
After one season at Syracuse, Anthony entered the 2003 NBA draft and was selected with the third overall pick by the Denver Nuggets. While playing for Denver, he led the Nuggets to the playoffs every year from 2004 to 2010; the team won two division titles in that span. In 2009, Anthony led the Nuggets to their first Conference Finals appearance since 1985. In 2011, he was traded from Denver to the New York Knicks days before the NBA trade deadline. In a January 24, 2014 game against the Charlotte Bobcats, Anthony scored a career-high 62 points, setting a Knicks’ single-game scoring record and a Madison Square Garden single-game scoring record. Anthony was traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder, where he played one season before signing with the Rockets.
Anthony has played in the Olympics for the US national team a record four times, winning a bronze medal with the 2004 squad and gold medals on the 2008, 2012, and 2016 Olympic teams. As of April 2016, he was the US Olympic team’s all-time leader in points, rebounds, and games played. Anthony currently ranks tenth on the NBA’s all time regular season scoring list.
Anthony played one season at Syracuse University, during the 2002–03 season, where he averaged 22.2 points (16th in the NCAA, fourth in the Big East) and 10.0 rebounds (19th in the NCAA, third in the Big East, first among NCAA Division I freshmen). He helped guide the Orangemen to their first ever NCAA tournament title in 2003. He led the team in scoring, rebounding, minutes played (36.4 minutes per game), field goals made and free throws made and attempted. Anthony’s 33-point outburst against the University of Texas in the Final Four set an NCAA tournament record for most points by a freshman. In the championship game against the University of Kansas, Anthony had 20 points and 10 rebounds. For his efforts during the NCAA tournament, Anthony earned the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player Award. Afterwards, Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim described Anthony as “[…] by far, the best player in college basketball. It wasn’t even close. Nobody was even close to him last year in college basketball. That’s the bottom line”.
Anthony said that he originally planned to stay at Syracuse for two to three seasons, but having already accomplished everything he set out to do, he chose to abandon his collegiate career (with Boeheim’s blessing) and declared himself eligible for the 2003 NBA draft. Some of Anthony’s highlights in his time with Syracuse include being named Second-Team All-American by the Associated Press as a freshman, leading his team to a 30–5 record, capturing the school’s first ever NCAA title and being the consensus pick for NCAA Freshman of the Year. He was also named to the All-Big East First Team and was the consensus selection for the Big East Conference Freshman of the Year as so as unanimous selection for Big East All Rookie Team.