- Last Updated: 2:04 PM, June 27, 2012
- Posted: 2:35 AM, June 27, 2012
Carmelo Anthony has his wax figure, unveiled Tuesday at the famed Madame Tussauds in Times Square. LeBron James has his championship ring, won Thursday in South Beach.
Anthony called Tuesday’s honor at “the top of my list,’’ but said winning a title and dethroning his buddy James would trump that. Admitting James’ title has provided “extra motivation,’’ a slimmed-down Melo said yesterday he could be next.
“I believe my time is coming,’’ he said after taking pictures by his statue with wife La La. “I’m a big believer in that. Whether this year or next year, I truly believe our time is coming. We’re going to keep playing for that.’’
Anthony has been training for the London Olympics with Tyson Chandler in Los Angeles. He has lost 12 pounds, down to 239, since the playoffs ended, taking coach Mike Woodson’s advice to get in better shape.
As reported by The Post, Woodson and his staff took a five-day visit to Los Angeles to meet with and work out Anthony, Chandler, Jeremy Lin and Landry Fields last week. Anthony and Chandler will report for Team USA training camp July 5 in Las Vegas.
“I’m exceeding expectations,’’ Anthony said. “They were kind of shocked to see me down in weight. They came to my workout, saw it. They’re actually excited how much hard work I’ve put in since the season ended.’’
Anthony said Woodson’s visit was productive and should put away any speculation Lin may not re-sign. Woodson took out them out to dinner twice.
“It was good,’’ Anthony said. “We got together with the coaching staff. They gave their support. The training staff. We’re just trying to get that camaraderie right now and a family mentality, try to create a bond — not just on the court but off the court.’’
Though the Knicks bowed out in the first round of the playoffs, losing in five games to Miami, Anthony said he believes it’s impossible to judge the club yet.
“We got to be together for a minute,’’ he said. “All the teams that won have been together for a few years and been through a lot of stuff. We had a half a season [in 2010-11 after his trade from Denver] and the lockout [season] last year. This year, we want to come in with a clean slate. We got a full year. We’ll be there for a full year. A full training camp. I’ll have nothing to worry about. It’s just basketball and locking in.’’
Miami’s title could be a sign the Knicks aren’t that far away. Beset by a massive amount of injuries in the Miami series. they never stood a chance.
“I’m extra motivated,’’ Anthony said. “The motivation is fun, to see those guys, see how excited they were to win a championship, to see LeBron overcome everything he’s been going through. I couldn’t have been more excited for them. It’s motivation, first to play in the Olympics with them. Then after that, get up for the season.’’
Anthony said he texted and talked to James and Dwyane Wade the night they won the title.
“I sent them all my love and my positive energy that way to them,’’ Anthony said. “They were more excited that I actually sent them a message at that time. I took my son to Disney so I missed the game.’’
In the Miami-Knicks series, Chandler was barely able to move in Game 1 with the flu and Iman Shumpert was lost for the series, tearing his ACL. Amar’e Stoudemire was injured after Game 2 when he punched a fire extinguisher, starting point guard Baron Davis blew out his knee in Game 5 and former starting point guard Jeremy Lin missed the series after March knee surgery.
“We believe we’re a good team,’’ Anthony said. “I always said injuries, that was our downfall. It was a roller-coaster season for us. They did one great thing in solidifying Coach Woodie, keeping him here two, three years.’’
Anthony’s likeness — in a free-throw shooting pose — will join a sports room filled with other New York sports celebrities, Derek Jeter, Joe Namath, David Wright, George Steinbrenner and Eli Manning. Michael Jordan, Yao Ming, Serena Williams and Evander Holyfield are also in the room.
“This is the No. 1 thing,’’ said Anthony, a Brooklyn native. “I never imagined representing New York like this.’’
He will have to take the statue for now.