After much hoopla, Carmelo Anthony made his New York Knicks debut tonight. And as expected, his introduction to the home crowd at Madison Square Garden was overly dramatic. This was partly due to the moment, partly due to timing, and partly due to Knicks owner James Dolan wanting to give himself a big, fat pat on the back for pulling the whole thing off.
All day, the MSG Network has been playing little vignettes about Carmelo’s NYC “homecoming.” They are perhaps a little too emotional, but for New York fans that are all too used to getting wrapped up in a moment, they are sufficiently goosebump-inducing. The introduction began with one of these vignettes, complete with the Diddy jingle in the background.
We then got a quick reminder of whose still on the team: footage of the pre-Carmelo Knicks that are still here. It probably took forever to edit, since there’s not too much of that footage to choose from. A few Landry Fields passes and Amar’e Stoudemire dunks later, we were ready for the main event.
And it was a main event: Carmelo, all 6-8-from-Syracuse of him, walking down a ramp fit for a WWE pay-per-view, with Knicks city dancers city dancing, tribal drummers tribal drumming, and DJ Clue on the 1’s and 2’s. It was more TV show than basketball game, but that’s exactly what we wanted.
Watch video of Carmelo’s introduction to New York here: