HoopsHype.com Interviews

Carmelo Anthony: "I'm not expecting anything easy"
by Morris O'Kelly / July 18, 2003

Something everybody has wondered about... Is there a rivalry between you and LeBron James?

Carmelo Anthony: No, not at all. We both just wanna go out and play well. It's not about just us.

What do you think will be the biggest change between college and professional ball?

CA: 82-game season. That's a lot of games to play. That's like three college seasons or more if you make the playoffs.

Is there some part of your game that you'd like to improve while you play in the Summer Pro League?

CA: I think I'll always want to improve my defense. That's something that can always be better. Not saying it's bad now, just something you should always work on.

How do you think you will match up against the other '3s' in the league?

CA: I think I'll do well. I'm confident about my skills. I know I haven't played them so I have to learn them, but like I said, 82 games is a long time. I'll have time.

Is there anything else you'd like to improve over the course of the season?

CA: (laughing) Conditioning. Definitely my conditioning. You have to play more minutes, and play hard every night for more games. Everybody is faster, too.

What do you think the competition will be like in the Summer Pro League?

CA: It'll be tough... and physical. These guys are trying to make teams and impress people. So they're gonna come hard at you.

Do you think you'll have any butterflies or be nervous in this your first pro-style game?

CA: No, not at all. It's just basketball.

Does anything related to this professional game make you nervous?

CA: Well, I do feel a lot better now that my contract is out of the way. You just don't like stuff like that hanging around.

You weren't concerned about it not happening, were you?

CA: No, not at all. I just wanted to get it done so I could start playing. That's the most important thing, I wanna play.

Carmelo, you've been given a lot of attention this year and some may think that guys in the NBA will be coming at you hard. What do you think about that?

CA: I say 'come with it.' I'm not expecting anything easy. You have to earn your place. That's fine with me.

What has been your experience like with the Nuggets organization so far?

CA: It's been great. (Nuggets GM) Kiki Vandeweghe really has a plan to turn this team around and I'm glad that I can be a part of it.

What are your personal expectations for your upcoming rookie year?

CA: Play hard, learn as much as I can and do what I do best. The rest will take care of itself I think.

Morris O'Kelly is a regular contributor to HoopsHype.com

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