Carmelo Anthony April 2013Is Carmelo Anthony a superstar in the NBA? I would say no. I believe in order to become a superstar caliber player, one must reach the NBA Finals.

A superstar player necessarily doesn't not have to win in the NBA Finals, but at least reach it once in their career. If you take a look at the best players in the league who would be considered superstars, each of them have been to the finals.

Here's a short list of some of those players, in no particular order, that have made it to the Finals: Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Charles Barkley, Jason Kidd, Dwight Howard, Dirk Nowitzki, Shaquille O’Neal, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Hakeem Olajuwon, Tim Duncan, Dwayne Wade, Reggie Miller, Gary Payton, Shawn Kemp, Allen Iverson.

Melo is undoubtedly best pure scorer in the NBA. He can score from the post, off-the-dribble, from the perimeter and has a variety of nifty moves in and around the basket. He is a highly-skilled player with a combination of size, speed, quickness, and power.

He currently leads the NBA in scoring, averaging 28.7 points per game. The last player to win the scoring title and an NBA championship in the same season was Shaquille O'Neal with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2000.

The New York Knicks, who are just coming off a 13-game winning streak, are the leading threat to dethrone the vaunted Miami Heat. Anthony must lead the Knicks out of the first round.

He has exited the first round of the playoffs in eight out of nine seasons. His best finish in the playoffs was in 2009, when he and Chauncey Billups reached the Western Conference Finals with the Denver Nuggets, but they lost to the eventual-champion Lakers.

Anthony also has the worst career playoff-winning percentage of any player in the NBA (min 50 postseason games):

1. Carmelo Anthony16-3631%
2. Mookie Blaylock18-3633%
3. Eduardo Najera20-3934%
4. Chris Dudley20-3437%
5. Brad Miller19-3138%

His last two exits came against the Boston Celtics in 2011 and the Heat in 2012, who eventually won the NBA Title in last year's shortened lockout season.

This year's Knicks have added veterans such as Jason Kidd, Kenyon Martin, Rasheed Wallace and Kurt Thomas, who add valuable playoff and championship experience.

J.R. Smith is having one of his best seasons as a pro, and under head coach Mike Woodson's leadership, this Knicks team is ready to challenge the Heat and compete for the NBA Title.

Do New York Knicks fans finally have the player who will deliver their first championship in over 40 years, or are they just ready to watch this generation's Patrick Ewing lose to this generation's Jordan (LeBron)?


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