Anthony returns to face Knicks team rising behind Porzingis

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After all, it's not like he asked out of NY, like his teammate Paul George did while with the Indiana Pacers.

Anthony expects to get some cheers from the fans at Madison Square Garden tonight.

"This win definitely boosts our morale because we've lost games like this and coming back to the Garden is always a show, " Anthony added. Maybe that had something to do with the blockbuster deal that forced the Knicks to part with considerable talent just to get him. "It'll be fun to win back in the Garden now that I'm on another team and knowing the things we're trying to do and create and go as a team". Even when it was hard.

This has potential to be an error-filled game for the offense of NY. Porzingis is playing almost as well as Anthony ever did in NY and seems to enjoy unyielding support from both fans and the front office that Anthony never had. He led the Knicks in scoring and was an All-Star during each of his six full seasons in NY.

"He's Embiid, helluva talent, I just love his competitive spirit, " Anthony said. Those are my roots, the people there.

And there shouldn't be any rancor, because 'Melo never wanted to leave the Knicks, and if anything, Phil Jackson is the bad guy in this scenario and Knicks fans realize that.

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But the current star of the Knicks, Kristaps Porzingis, thinks he should instead be met with love. That 54-win season in 2012-13, when Anthony took third in the MVP vote, signified the first time NY won a playoff series since 12 years. But in Porzingis and rookie Frank Ntilikina, the Knicks' better days are definitively ahead of them. Anthony formed a Big 3 with fellow All-Stars Russell Westbrook and Paul George, an experiment that hasn't gone as desired thus far. The Thunder are barely in the playoffs if the season ended today, with a 14-14 record, and Anthony in particular is struggling.

It was an odd game for Anthony, who was having a sensational shooting night until midway through the third quarter, when he stopped getting the ball.

What impact will Anthony's return make?

That is a trend that will continue for a long time, and that could make this chapter of Anthony's career quite short. That's a forgotten aspect of September's trade.

"Walking in there, it'll be a little emotional, because from the standpoint, that's home". "Being back there and running out of the other side of the tunnel, seeing people who I became close to, seeing my family who I can't see much now because I'm in Oklahoma City, seeing my wife".

Lance Thomas also shot down the theory that Anthony held the Knicks back: "He plays great basketball, and teams play through him".