Anthony in charitable mood -- just not to the Lakers
Melo's honors veterans, then drops double-double on NBA champs
In his travels with USA Basketball, Nuggets forward Carmelo Anthony has personally thanked soldiers at U.S. military bases in Korea and Japan.
His words of support and gratitude weren’t just lip service.
Putting his money where his mouth is on Veteran’s Day, Anthony presented a $50,000 check to military families before Thursday night’s game against the Los Angeles Lakers.
Anthony doesn’t have any family members who served in the military, but he believes that servicemen and women deserve more recognition than they often receive.
“I wouldn’t say we take them for granted, but we undervalue what they go out there and do for us and the whole country,” Anthony said. “They need to be more appreciated.”
Anthony, who does extensive charitable work through the Carmelo Anthony Foundation, spent part of his day Wednesday distributing boxes of food and personal-care items to families during an event with Feed The Children.
On Friday, he has a luncheon scheduled with a group of boys and girls who wrote essays through Street Kidz Inc., a community-oriented organization that fosters leadership in young people.
“This is a charity week for me,” Anthony said. “It’s perfect timing because we have a couple days off.”
Anthony and the Nuggets deserve a chance to catch their collective breath after knocking off the previously undefeated Lakers 118-112 in front of a sellout crowd at the Pepsi Center. Anthony scored 32 points and grabbed 13 rebounds to help Denver (5-4) rebound from back-to-back road losses at Chicago and Indiana.
“It was a big win, regardless of if it’s early or late in the season,” Anthony said. “The way we bounced back tonight, the way we responded, I’m proud of my team for that.”
The Nuggets bench came up big, sparking a 16-0 run in the fourth quarter to erase a 10-point deficit. J.R. Smith later gave Denver the lead for good with a 3-pointer as Denver used an 11-0 surge to pull away from the defending NBA champions while playing for the fifth time in seven days.
“This was by far our bench’s best performance so far in this early season,” Anthony said. “They came in and hit some shots, played some defense, got out in the open court and opened that lead up for us.”
Smith finished with 13 points, five rebounds and four assists and backup point guard Ty Lawson added 17 points and five assists.
“I think every time we play them, we get hyped up for the game, especially at home,” Smith said. “Our fans did a great job of keeping us in the game, and it was easy after that.”
The Nuggets now have three days off to prepare for their next game Monday at Phoenix. Reserve forward Chris Andersen is expected to join practice for the first time since having knee surgery in late-May.
“He’s anxious, ambitious to get back as quick as possible,” Nuggets coach George Karl said. “I think the next three days he’ll probably play some. I don’t think he’ll run up and down the court 5-on-5, but I know he’ll participate in all 5-on-zero activities and shooting activities and stuff like that. I think we’re starting the process of trying to get him to play 5-on-5.”