Veteran superstar Carmelo Anthony claims that his time away from the NBA mentally prepared him for life inside the bubble in Disney World, Orlando.

Anthony is one of the league's active superstars. He won the scoring championship in 2013 and was one of the most prolific scorers during his time with the Denver Nuggets and the New York Knicks.

However, in January 2019, the Houston Rockets traded Anthony to the Chicago Bulls, and the Bulls waived his contract on February 1. Anthony remained unsigned until the Trail Blazers picked him up early into the 2019-2020 season last November in a non-guaranteed deal.

As one of the most promising young stars back in 2003, Anthony entered the league as the best collegiate player in his class after leading Syracuse University to its first-ever NCAA title in the same year.

While the 10-time All-Star performed well as an individual for several different teams, age caught up with him before winning an NBA championship. When he was released by the Bulls, he thought it officially ended his basketball career.

After getting a chance to revive his career, Anthony was averaging 15.3 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 1.6 assists for Portland this season, and it was enough to boost the Trail Blazers and get them an invite to play in Orlando for the season restart. Portland amended the deal into a guaranteed contract in December.

The NBA-Disney bubble environment is different from what players are used to in their careers. There are no fans and family in the stands. They are "strongly encouraged" to stay in their hotel rooms when they are not practising or playing games. Some claim that the food is terrible (or unhealthy for top athletes), and staying in a "semi-prison" environment for an extended period of time is mentally exhausting.

According to Blazers Edge, Anthony's time away from the league has mentally prepared him for such challenges.

Anthony claims the isolation and abrupt lifestyle change away from basketball during his time away was difficult and challenging. He understands how such a change is stressful for young players. Apart from the pressure of important games moving forward, "Everybody's gonna be tested mentally, everybody will be tested emotionally."

However, unlike other NBA players, Anthony claims he has already survived such a stressful and isolated environment. His experience away from the league gave him the mental toughness to survive it.

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Carmelo Anthony