Melo: Syracuse Owes Indiana From Keith Smart Shot | Zagsblog
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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Friday / July 19.
  • Melo: Syracuse Owes Indiana From Keith Smart Shot

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    NEW YORK — It has been 26 years and one Syracuse championship since Keith Smart crushed the hearts of the Orange faithful with his shot in the 1987 NCAA championship game in The Superdome.

    Yet the way Carmelo Anthony figures it, the Orange still owe one to the Hoosiers.

    “We’re not losing to Indiana, we owe them from the Keith Smart shot anyway,” Anthony said Wednesday night after helping the Knicks to their sixth straight win by scoring 22 points in a 108-101 win over the Memphis Grizzlies.

    Anthony and the Knicks have the night off tonight, so expect Melo to be front and center in front of a flat screen at about 9:45 p.m. when the No. 4 Orange tip off against No. 1 Indiana in an East Regional semifinal in Washington.

    “Oh, without a doubt,” he said. “This is a big test for us right there. Indiana, they playing very well so this is a big test.”

    Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said Wednesday that he didn’t get over the Smart shot until 2003, when Anthony finally delivered a title in his first and only season at Syracuse.

    “When you lose a game like that, you really almost never get over it,” Boeheim said. “I got over it in 2003. That’s when I really — I probably thought about it for those 26 years [16 until Syracuse won the title] most of the time. I never think about it anymore. Coach [Bob] Knight was good after the game. He told me we would get back and win it, he just didn’t tell me it would take 26 years. He’s smart, just not that smart.”

    While Anthony’s former coach will be battling Tom Crean for a spot in the Elite Eight, his current coach is an Indiana alum who played for Knight.

    As a junior during the 1978-79 season, Mike Woodson was the leading scorer on the Indiana team that won the NIT. The 1979-80 outfit, led by Woodson and former Knicks President and coach Isiah Thomas, won the Big Ten championship and advanced to the Sweet 16.

    Asked if the two men would wager on tonight’s contest, Anthony said, “I don’t know. I gotta ask Woody. We gonna discuss that.”

    **For Video, Notes and Quotes on the game, read my Notebook here.


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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

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