By Michael Kinney
It’s called Hoodie Melo. That is the name fans of Carmelo Anthony have given his alter ego.
It started when Anthony was in New York and he wore a hoodie almost every time he was working out.
The alter-ego soon became as popular on social media sites as Anthony in real-life. Mostly due to Anthony’s workout partner, Chris Brickley.
When he was traded to Oklahoma City, the hoodie look came with him.
But that is when a funny thing happened. The look caught on in the most unexpected of places. Conservative Oklahoma.
“I guess it’s a good thing,” Anthony said Thursday before the Thunder left for Minnesota. “I can say I’ve turned something that was not so good of a situation and the hoodie became a blessing to me.”
Hoodie Melo emerge during a turbulent time in Anthony’s career. He was at odds with Knicks President Phill Jackson and much of the New York fan base believed he was past his prime and unable to carry a team.
In the videos that showed up in Instagram and Twitter, Hoodie Melo was in attack mode during workouts. It showed him practicing at 2 a.m. or running sprints in the dead of night.
Anthony was letting Hoodie Melo speak for him.
“The Hoodie Melo thing, you know, for me it was just — actually, it started with a beanie. I was just in the gym, and I didn’t have a haircut, and I’m just going to go and throw a hat on,” Anthony said last month at media day. “I wanted to sweat. I just started working back out in the summer. And then from there it went to a hoodie and it got out and the phenomenon started.”
Then the hoodie became more than just a workout outfit. It became a suit of armor for the beleaguered all-star..
“For me, it was just showing a different focus that I have, a different motivation,” Anthony said. “Kind of just locking into what I have to do and locking myself into the gym and locking myself into focusing in on my body because I didn’t know what was going to happen. So it was just so much going on that was surrounding me that I just wanted to find a way that I could just focus in. That’s when Hoodie Melo was created.
Yet, even Anthony had no idea how fast Hoodie Melo would catch on in Oklahoma. Or how it would turn from a way to block out the noise surrounding him to a way to connect to his new fans with the Thunder.
“I think the timing of it was a perfect timing,” Anthony said. “It gives it new life, it gives it new energy. A new focus. Rather than just focus on my time spent in New york or the past couple of years, I think it gives everybody some new energy, some new motivation. The timing is perfect. It went from one situation to being a blessing for me right now.”
When Anthony was told he made the hoodie cool, all he had to say was “Stay Melo” as Hoodie Melo walked off.
Michael Kinney is a Freelance Content Writer with Eyeamtruth.com