Carmelo Anthony looked strong on Tuesday, finishing the game with 22 points and 13 rebounds in New York's 87-81 victory over Indiana.
Anthony shot 8-for-17 from the field, including 3-for-6 from the three-point line, and added an assist and a steal.
The 32-year old veteran scored 14 points in the fourth quarter as the Knicks outscored Indiana 25-17 in the final 12 minutes.
It was Anthony's seventh double-double of the season, and just the second time this month he reached the 20-point mark.
On the same night that Jeff Hornacek essentially conceded his team's hopes for the postseason, Anthony proved he had plans to reward those who came out to see New York play following the snow storm.
The Knicks showed resiliency, coming back from a double-digit deficit. Anthony rose above as the catalyst with 14 fourth quarter points. He turned up the intensity and put that killer instinct on display.
At various points this season, Anthony's offense has looked like the only thing going the team's way. He especially turned it up in the month of February, leading to a late all-star selection. Following the break, however, Anthony has faded into the background with more talk of the triangle offense. This was just the second time he scored over 20 points in March. He's not often enough a clear cut focus point.
Anthony's a very special offensive player. On Tuesday night, he took over, hitting jumpers from each side and finding a rhythm from beyond the arc. It's exciting for fans to see him play at that high level. If the head coach puts him out there, it's Anthony job to perform and he did just that. However, on a night where Coach Hornacek acknowledged that the team will start looking toward the future, allowing Anthony to play his heart out and lead New York to a victory was surprising. No team will admit to attempting to lose on purpose. Still, a decision could have been made to keep the team's younger talent out there during the stretch instead.
On the other hand, if the writing is truly on the wall for Anthony's departure this offseason, a game like this is nice for he and the fan base to have as a memory of his efforts.