Who's better: Melo or Blake?

Two of the league's best forwards do battle in our side-by-side analysis

Originally Published: April 7, 2013
By Chris Palmer | ESPN The Magazine

Carmelo Anthony Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE/Getty ImagesCarmelo Anthony is a prolific scorer, but is Blake Griffin's overall game better?

In this space we'll break down the best individual matchup of the week to see who's the better player. But toss out career accomplishments or potential. This is about ability -- strengths, weaknesses, intangibles -- and who gives his team the best chance to win. It's about the only thing that matters when you step on the court on any given night -- who's better right now.

A game-changing forward is an essential part of success in today's NBA. Be they perimeter-oriented shooters, athletic slashers or back-to-the-basket types, the forwards whom teams are building around come from every mold. Carmelo Anthony and Blake Griffin are two of the NBA's most dynamic forwards for very different reasons. Anthony is the sweet-shooting flamethrower who's a threat to put 40 in the books on any given night. Griffin is the raw bundle of athleticism who combines a high-wire act with a smashmouth ground game. It's a contrast of styles if there ever was one.

Anthony and Griffin are the keys to their team's championship hopes, but who's better?

Chris Palmer

ESPN the Magazine