James Harden was in attack mode Thursday night — as he usually is — driving to get his shots in close with no Tyson Chandler there to deter him. Of Harden’s 16 shot attempts, nine came inside eight feet of the rim (56.3 percent of his attempts).
With that Harden got fouled — he had 18 free throw attempts.
Carmelo Anthony wants those calls.
Anthony was frustrated with the officiating after the game and said so, speaking with the Associated Press.
Asked if it was tough that the Knicks sent Harden to the line often when they got close, Anthony replied, “We didn’t put him on the line, they put him on the line.”
“You look at that, you see the way that some guys get their calls,” Anthony said, “and for me, I’ve got to get cut, you’ve got to see blood for me to get a call down there. So that’s where the frustration comes from.”
In the NBA foul calls tend to go to the aggressor, and Harden is aggressive (as you can see from the shot numbers above). There’s a reason he is third in the NBA in free throw attempts per game at 9.8 this season (Anthony is tied for 8th at 6.9 per game).
Anthony certainly is an aggressive shooter but he also tends to pull up for a jumper — 14 of his 30 shots on Thursday came inside eight feet of the rim (46.7 percent). Jumpers are less likely to get foul calls
Harden got the calls he normally gets. But after Anthony didn’t get the four-point play he wanted at the end I understand his frustration.