It's been a rough year for Carmelo Anthony. The New York Knicks small forward has carried his team through the thick and thin this season, and even with scoring outbursts like a 62-point game, sometimes it isn't enough. Phil Jackson sees that, too.

Luckily for the Knicks, they're in serious contention with the Atlanta Hawks for the East's final playoff spot. If they keep strong, they'll be in for sure, especially with the Hawks still struggling.

However, that still doesn't take away what Anthony had to endure all this season, as Jackson explains. Jackson, the Knicks' new team president, says he talked with Melo over the past two weeks about him carrying the team's burden.

"We've had a couple occasions to talk," the Zen Master said. "We haven't really delved into the future as much as what's gone on, getting to know each other type of thing. Trying to see how he's feeling about playing.

"He's had to carry a big load. It's been a tough year for him. But it's been a tough year for everyone. It's not just isolated with him. But I think he feels the weight of it a lot more on himself."

The Knicks are 33-43 right now and have won 12 of their past 15 games. They are just percentage points ahead of the Hawks (32-42).

We'll see how New York does if they make the postseason, which will then ultimately lead to the big question come July: is Melo staying or leaving?


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