Carmelo Anthony has spent 17 years in the NBA, one with the Portland Trail Blazers.
Over that time the future Hall of Famer has learned a trick or two, and he displayed that veteran moxie last season with Portland.
Anthony arrived in Portland on November 19 to help an injury-plagued Blazers team.
After a year away from the game, Anthony showed the world he still had plenty of gas left in the tank, averaging 15.4 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 1.5 assists per game.
There was sure to be a market for his services this offseason, and there was, but once free agency hit Anthony remained loyal and re-signed with the team that gave him a second chance when no one else would.
The Blazers had a stellar offseason, bringing in Robert Covington, Enes Kanter, Harry Giles, Derrick Jones Jr, and re-signing Rodney Hood. But perhaps no move was greater to the team as a whole than bringing back Melo.
On the latest episode of the Talkin' Blazers podcast, host Channing Frye talked about the impact Melo will have on this revamped Blazers roster.
Sure, Anthony is going to find ways to get buckets. He has been a shot taker and a shot maker since the first time he stepped on an NBA court in 2003. But to Frye, Melo is more important than a simple bucket getter. His size, his versatility, his knowledge of the game, all really allow Coach Terry Stotts to tinker with a multitude of possible lineups.
"You play Melo at the four, with Nurk... You go Dame, CJ, Covington, Melo, Nurk. That's a great lineup. That's a switch all five lineup. You can go CJ, Rodney Hood, Melo, Collins, Nurk. There is plenty of time and opportunity for Melo here because he does something that no one else does."
Frye threw out those two possible lineups, but there are plenty more you can run with Melo, and he doesn't have to be focal point.
More so than what he can bring on the court, he proved last season that he is a great locker room guy and someone the players can rely on because, basically, he's been there before. It's another key trait of his that Frye sees helping the Blazers.
"He is one of their best, if not their best block scorer. What he brings to the team in the locker room. He knows if he has an opportunity if he's hitting, he's gonna be in at the end of the game. You have to play him at the end of the game because he's not afraid to take the big shot, he's been there, he's showed up and I think Dame and CJ definitely wanted him back and the city embraces him."
With all the moves the Blazers made, someone has to be the odd man out, right? Will Melo take minutes for Covington, Jones Jr., or someone else? Once again, Frye doesn't think so because this skills are so unique.
Said, Frye, "You're not taking anything away from anyone else because he does something that everyone else doesn't do."
The Melo experiment worked will for the Blazers last season, and even with a new look squad this time around, it could payoff big again.