So, how does Chris Paul withdrawing from consideration affect Melo?
“That doesn’t affect my decision either way,” Anthony said.
“Mentally, I think it’s good for me to go out there and feel what (winning) feels like again,” he said.
“From a morale standpoint as a player, if you’ve been through the things I’ve been through the past couple of years you want to feel what that success feels like. You want that success,” he said. “So the Olympics for me is great timing.”
As for Melo, yeah, he could use a winning experience. Despite him quietly improving his all-around game and reducing the individual deficiencies that many blamed for his lack of team success, the Knicks have been miserable in recent years. Melo isn’t blameless, but he’s more victim than culprit. His supporting cast has been dismal, and he’s been hurt.
I’m not entirely convinced Melo belongs on the best version of a Team USA roster, but he helped the Americans win gold medals in 2008 and 2012 and a bronze medal in 2004. He has probably earned a spot on the team if he wants it.