SLOW-M(el)O: Embiid, Gasol ran more miles than Anthony this season

Carmelo Anthony is washed, but he’ll probably be the last one to acknowledge that.

And that’s maybe because he’s too blinded by his own ego to see the truth. Give anyone – even Stevie Wonder – his raw and advanced numbers, and one can quickly tell how bad he’s been for the Oklahoma City Thunder. His 16.2 points, 1.3 assists and 40.4 percent shooting from the field are all far cries from his career averages of 24.1 points, 3.0 dimes and 44.9 percent shooting. His net rating this season stood at minus-9.7. Oklahoma City’s worse with him on the floor, as indicated by his -0.61 Real Plus-Minus (a stat that estimates a player’s on-court impact on team performance).

If you’re more of an ‘eye-test’ person, you could see it too in the way he played on the floor. Anthony’s body language on the bench and when he doesn’t get the ball in his spot is horrible. When he does get it, he either jab-steps into eternity and throws up a low percentage mid-ranger or heaves an ill-advised three even with a lot of time on the clock. When his shots don’t fall, he literally doesn’t do anything; he doesn’t pass, and he doesn’t provide resistance anywhere, from the perimeter to the block.

He’s lazy.

But if you think you’d heard, seen and read everything about Melo’s horrible season, you’d be surprised to know that the stats above still have not encapsulated everything wrong with this guy.

NBA.com tracks the average distance that a player runs in a course of a game. Dead-last on that list, of course, is the venerable Carmelo Anthony. He ran only 2.01 miles per game; lumbering centers like Marc Gasol, Joel Embiid (both at 2.04 miles per game), Dwight Howard (2.05), Al Horford (2.11) and Nikola Jokic (2.16) went up and down the court more often than him.

CJ McCollum led the league in distance ran per game at 2.69 miles.

Melo was also the fourth-slowest player, running an average speed of 3.77 miles per game, just behind DeMarcus Cousins, James Harden and Marc Gasol – or guys whose games are predicated on the pace that they ran at.

Anthony has a player option, meaning he can opt in or out of a contract before next season on his own volition. If ever Melo does opt out, no sane general manager would offer him 20 million dollars just to jack up terrible shots and drag himself (and the team) down.

Good luck with your All-Star forward, Oklahoma City.

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