Carmelo Anthony is having one of the best seasons of his career while leading the New York Knicks to the top record in the Eastern Conference (17-5).

Kobe Bryant described a conversation he had with Anthony over the summer as teammates on the United States' Olympic team. 

“You know he and I are good friends,” said Bryant. “We talked when we were together for the Olympic team. I think last year it was very tough for him because he was criticized a lot for shooting and for playing the way that he likes to play. Then the whole Linsanity thing happened and everybody said, 'Well, they win better without Melo' and all this nonsense.

"You guys (media) are guilty of it. You guys really put the hammer on him and as a result he kind of got a little gun shy and a little self conscious about things. I just asked him, ‘What the hell are you doing? To hell with them.’ You have to do what you do best and I think the organization put pieces around him that allow him to do that and now you guys all celebrate him for doing what he’s always done. It’s funny. God bless you guys.”

Anthony ranks second in scoring (27.7 points per game) among all NBA players.