Carmelo Anthony has done a lot of things over the course of his 16-year career. Winning a Championship is not one of them.
Unfortunately for the Blazers forward, none of hi steams were able to get over the hump and hoist the Larry O’Brien trophy. The closest he ever got was the 2009 Western Conference Finals. The Nuggets took the Lakers to six games before losing their fourth and it was the last time a Melo-led team would ever get that far.
Anthony himself still believes that their run in 2009 ended way too early.
“We really wanted Orlando in the Finals that year. If we get Game 1 in LA and Game 2, we going back to Denver, we sweeping them. We would’ve swept Orlando too that year.”
Carmelo Anthony says it should’ve been him and the Nuggets coming out of the West in 2009 over the Lakers – “We really wanted Orlando in the Finals that year. If we get Game 1 in LA and Game 2, we going back to Denver, we sweeping them. We would’ve swept Orlando too that year.” pic.twitter.com/PRrZb6ttRp
— Tomer Azarly (@TomerAzarly) March 28, 2020
Denver finished second in the West that year with a 54-28 record as Melo averaged 22 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 3.4 assists on 44% shooting. Don’t forget, they also had J.R. Smith, Nene, Kenyon Martin, and Chauncey Billups, among others. The Nuggets were certainly one of the better teams that year (especially on paper), but not even they could overcome the power of the Kobe-led Lakers. 2009 was the first year of their back-to-back run.
In hindsight, who knows what would have happened if things turned out differently in that series with L.A. — they might have won a Championship and Carmelo might have never left for New York.
We’ll never know now, but one has to think it’s not too late for Carmelo to finally earn that elusive Chip.