Carmelo’s 36 points, big third quarter lifts Denver past Indiana

Carmelo Anthony had that George Gervin flow going once again last night. Not that ‘Melo was dropping mid-range finger rolls or squeezing his skinny body in between some poor team’s Swiss Cheese defense — it was more that Carmelo’s 23-point effort in the third quarter against Indiana was awfully reminiscent of the 33-point quarter he had a couple years ago that tied Iceman’s record for most in a quarter in NBA history … You could say ‘Melo (36 pts, 14-27 FG) channeled Iceman in that there wasn’t as much of that usual bully-style in his buckets. He knocked down six three-pointers in the third, many of them wide open. We get the feeling the next Pacers practice will involve a lot of close-out drills. When ‘Melo wasn’t hitting shots against zero defense, Brandon Rush and rookie Paul George offered feeble attempts to disrupt his rhythm that made it look like they were scared of upsetting Mr. Anthony … As for Denver’s defense, they did what good teams do and took away the opposition’s top options. Danny Granger and Darren Collison combined for 13 points on 4-for-20 shooting … For the record, Denver fans are back to cheering ‘Melo. And that’s why no pro athlete — from LeBron James to Jerome James to JamesOn Curry — will ever let fans influence his decision on where to play. Every player knows fans are fickle and always/only love you when you’re winning … Now if you want to see ‘Melo get booed, just wait until next week. The Nuggets begin a five-game Eastern road trip tomorrow that includes a stop in New Jersey on Jan. 31 … Tyler Hansbrough (27 pts, 10 rebs) is one of those guys who needs to be on a good team. But he has to get in line behind Ryan Gomes, who has been toiling on Lottery squads his entire career and deserves his break first … When Nene wants it, he plays like an All-Star. Despite being limited to 26 minutes due to foul trouble, Nene still posted 15 points, 10 rebounds and 4 steals. Why isn’t he consistently that good? Maybe it’s because he needs a change of scenery. Yesterday it was reported that Nene — who can also become a free agent next summer — wants a trade, and he listed Miami as one of his preferred teams … Have the Heat already become the NBA’s Yankees? We’ve also heard that Ricky Rubio‘s people are interested in engineering a trade to get Rubio in Miami. Say what you want about Rubio’s overall game, but the kid can pass the rock, and would make music with D-Wade and LeBron even if he was just the backup point guard … Remember Kirk Snyder? The Nevada product and NBA vet was in jail last we heard, having been sentenced to three years for a burglary/assault case from 2009. Snyder is out now, and just signed with a Canadian pro basketball team. Check out the story HERE … Speaking of Nevada, anybody know whatever happened to Nick Fazekas? That guy was like Mid-Major Christian Laettner but disappeared from the NBA. Although no one has ever truly confirmed that Fazekas and Steve Novak aren’t the same person … Steelers vs. Packers. Who’s your pick? … We’re out like Rubio in a Wolves uniform …