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NBA All-Star Game 2013: Carmelo Anthony's Participation Is Risk for Knicks

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 10:  Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks in action against the Los Angeles Clippers during their game at Madison Square Garden on February 10, 2013 in New York City.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
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Mike MoraitisAnalyst IFebruary 15, 2013

After suffering a deep right arm contusion against the Toronto Raptors in a losing effort on Wednesday night, it appeared New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony wouldn't play in Sunday's NBA All-Star game—but it seems the injury won't stop him.

According to Jared Zwerling of ESPNNewYork.com, not only does 'Melo plan on playing, he will go ahead and start in the contest: "New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony will be in the starting lineup for Sunday's NBA All-Star Game in Houston, a league source confirmed Friday."

Anthony is having a sensational season for the Knicks that has certainly warranted his participation in this game as a starter.

The Syracuse product is averaging 28.6 points, 6.5 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game. Not only does 'Melo lead his team in scoring, but he also is No. 2 in the NBA in the same category and trails league leader Kevin Durant by less than a point.

Anthony's stellar play has helped the Knicks to a 32-18 record and the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference going into the break. He's even been in the discussion as a NBA MVP candidate.

Anthony's participation in this game is a huge risk for the Knicks.

Without question, Anthony is the team's best player and is vital to the Knicks' success moving forward. If they were to lose him for an extended amount of time, the Knicks would be in a bad way and would likely plummet in the standings.

Normally, you wouldn't think much of a star like Anthony playing in the All-Star Game, but often times the bigger names in this event like to make a show for fans.

While that's admirable and adds some spice to the contest itself, a guy like Anthony who is already injured could potentially aggravate his ailing arm by trying to pull off a spectacular dunk or blocked shot.

With so many stars on the floor, it's only natural that each will try and elevate their games, which could lead to unnecessary risks being taken.

The NBA could be a culprit in this.

The league would no doubt love to see Anthony participate in this game—as is the case with all NBA superstars. It wouldn't be out of the realm of possibility to think commissioner David Stern is putting pressure on Anthony to force him to play.

After all, this is the same league office that dished out a hefty fine to the San Antonio Spurs for resting their best players for a nationally televised game against the Miami Heat.

But, we can only assume at this point that Anthony is either fine or doing it for the love of the game and for the love of the fans who will be watching.

For the sake of the Knicks and their fans, let's just hope Anthony takes it easy while he's on the court and gets through this otherwise meaningless game with no further damage done.

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