After lighting up the Los Angeles Lakers for 22 first-quarter points, New York Knick Carmelo Anthony cooled off and then suffered an ankle injury Thursday night at Madison Square Garden.
Half-way through the third quarter in the Knicks 116-107 win, Melo sprained his left ankle after a hard drive to the basket and an unintentional knock to the ground by center Dwight Howard.
Anthony fell on his back as his left leg was caught underneath him, but the injury is not seen as severe even though it ended his night. Before leaving, the early favorite for league MVP netted 30 points in just 22 minutes, and the first-place Knicks remained the NBA's only team undefeated at home.
Currently, his status for New York’s matchup with Kyrie Irving and the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday is uncertain, but head coach Mike Woodson said after the game that Anthony was day-to-day.
This is the second injury in the past week that could sideline the league's second leading scorer. Anthony required five stitches to the middle finger of his non-shooting hand after crashing into the Knicks bench against Charlotte last week.
Anthony missed two games after that, but has returned with a vengeance, averaging 36.3 points and shooting 55 percent from the field and from 3-point range in the last three contests.
New York should be able to handle the 5-18 Cavaliers without Melo, but in 21 career games against Cleveland he’s averaged 21.4 points and 5.4 rebounds.