Carmelo Anthony says he's never seen Kristaps Porzingis as angry as he was in loss to Suns
PHOENIX -- Kristaps Porzingis is already becoming one of the better and more versatile big men in the league in just his second NBA season, but he's gone largely untested in terms of his physicality. Suns rookie Marquese Chriss changed that on Tuesday, and Porzingis eventually snapped.
The third-quarter scuffle seemed to light a fire under Porzingis, who scored 14 of his game-high 34 points in the fourth quarter and overtime before fouling out of his team's 113-111 loss.
“He needed that,” Carmelo Anthony said afterward. “Sometimes people try to take advantage of his kindness and I thought it was getting a little bit too much out there for him. He reacted, and we've got his back out there.
“I've never seen him get that angry. So for him to get to that, obviously something was going on.”
Porzingis admitted as much, but largely downplayed the incident.
"There were some words exchanged before that, and it was just both of us playing aggressively," Porzingis said. “A lot of moments I’m angry. I always try to calm myself down. That particular moment, yeah, obviously I was angry. Soon as the play was over, soon as that situation was over, next thing I was thinking about was making those free throws. That was all that was on my mind.
“I think it fired up the whole team. Just showing that you stand up for yourself and have teammates that have your back, and that’s the team spirit.’’