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Jalen Brunson is already a better New York Knick than Carmelo Anthony ever was

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Jalen Brunson has already been a huge bargain for the New York Knicks.

And one stat shows just how valuable Brunson, a former NBA backup, has been to one of the league’s most storied franchises.

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Jalen Brunson has taken over Knicks basketball and made New York his homeCredit: Getty

Brunson entered Game 5 of a second-round series against the Indiana Pacers on Tuesday night with 635 playoff points as a Knick.

Carmelo Anthony, who spent seven seasons at world-famous Madison Square Garden, made 10 All-Star teams during his 19-year NBA career and was selected to the league’s 75th Anniversary team.

But Melo ultimately disappointed with the Knicks, and he only scored 589 postseason points with New York.

Anthony was at his best in the playoffs earlier in his career with Denver.

Once he joined the Knicks, New York made the playoffs three times but never advanced past the second round.

Brunson has been superb in orange and blue, spending the 2023-24 season as an MVP candidate and making his first All-Star team.

He averaged 28.7 points on 47.9 percent shooting while connecting on 40.1 percent of his 3-pointers.

But the postseason has best proved Brunson’s worth in hard-to-please New York.

Carmelo Anthony never delivered on his big name in Madison Square Garden

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Carmelo Anthony never delivered on his big name in Madison Square GardenCredit: Getty Images – Getty

He entered Game 5 averaging 32.9 points, 7.6 assists and 3.8 rebounds, while leading a New York team that has shaken off injuries to pull within two wins of the Eastern Conference finals.

Factor in that Brunson has already scored more playoff points than Anthony, despite only being in New York for two years, and the second-round pick from Villanova has already put his personal stamp all over MSG.

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Brunson has become a modern-day basketball hero in New York.

Melo is respected — but it’s clear that Knicks fans always expected more from a huge name who never won an NBA title.

Anthony ended up playing for six teams, while his career ended with a slow decline.

“Brunson already a bigger Knicks legend than Melo,” one fan tweeted.

“Has played less playoff games than him, too,” a second fan posted.

“Seeing Melo’s legacy slowly fade is so funny after seeing how self centered he is,” a third fan wrote.

The Knicks haven't reached the conference finals in 24 years

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The Knicks haven’t reached the conference finals in 24 yearsCredit: Getty

“This is actually crazy,” a fourth fan said. “Carmelo Anthony really went to New York and accomplished nothing.”

It won’t be easy for Brunson and his Knicks to move on.

Indiana was a rising force in the East all season and won back-to-back home games after facing a 2-0 deficit.

Back in New York, Brunson has a huge chance to push the Knicks to the conference finals for the first time since 2000, when Jeff Van Gundy was the coach and Allan Houston was the team’s top scorer.

These are Brunson’s Knicks now.

The former Dallas Mavericks backup is two wins away from pushing Melo even further into New York’s distant past.

And fulfilling the promise that Brunson’s dad saw in him when the teenager went through brutal outdoor workouts in his youth.

In just two seasons, Brunson has already become bigger than Melo to Knicks fans.

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