Carmelo Anthony understands the growing hype surrounding New York Knicks team-mate Kristaps Porzingis after his impressive rookie season, he just wants it to be tapered a bit.
Porzingis, who averaged 14.3 points and 7.3 rebounds per game last season while finishing runner up in rookie of the year voting, slowed down a bit after a torrid start.
"It's going to be a learning process. It's a learning curve for him, too," Anthony said on Monday via the New York Daily News. "Last year, no one knew what to expect from him. It was all new to everybody. This year he's going to be a focal point in scouting reports and people are going to try to figure out ways how to stop him.
"So just a matter of being smarter and learning the game a little more maybe. He still don't know the game that much. He's still young. He's a second-year player. I think you put too much pressure on him to be great so fast.
"I just want him to just to — give him an opportunity to grow as a player."
Porzingis understands teams have better game plans against him and he needs to adapt his game to defeat his opposition.
In an attempt to learn more about the "stretch four" position, Porzingis watched old film of Dirk Nowitzki to see how he fought through different defences.
"I've seen probably like 90 per cent of his highlights and all that kind of stuff," Porzingis said. "But I was actually watching a full game and how they defended him in the playoffs. And it's a different story in the playoffs than the regular season. I'm trying to learn that part.
"That's going to be tough when it's playoff time when they really start paying attention to you and really start putting you in situations where you’re not comfortable and then how you're able to still be effective. And that's what I want to learn, that's why I'm watching those tapes."