Carmelo Anthony and Kid Mero team up to talk basketball (maybe even the Nets)

Carmelo Anthony and Kid Mero team up to talk basketball (maybe even the Nets)

Carmelo Anthony, the former NBA star, and Joel Martinez, the comedian known as Kid Mero, are somewhat of a perfect match to host a streaming series.

Both are New Yorkers: Anthony grew up in public housing in Red Hook, Brooklyn; Martinez is from the Bronx – and the city is an essential part of every man’s identity.

Anthony’s most memorable NBA moments came during his nearly seven seasons with the New York Knicks, from 2011 to 2017. He only won one playoff series in those years, but Knicks fans treated him like a conquering hero. Martinez is a longtime Knicks fan, a fact that comes up often on “Desus & Mero,” the late-night comedy talk show he hosted for four seasons with Daniel Baker, known as Desus Nice .

Anthony and Martinez are teaming up for a weekly series called “7PM in Brooklyn.” The show, which will be available on YouTube and Spotify starting Thursday, is produced by Wave Sports + Entertainment, the company behind podcasts hosted by Jason and Travis Kelce and Los Angeles Clippers forward Paul George.

The hosts expect to discuss primarily basketball and New York, although other topics will be acceptable. (“If you log on one day and it’s Meryl Streep and us, you shouldn’t be shocked,” Martinez said.)

They met in 2015 while Anthony was on tour at Vice Studios while Martinez was taping his show there. Martinez has a reputation as a brash talker while Anthony is more likely to play it safe. They discussed their collaboration in a Zoom interview.

These are edited excerpts from the conversation.

Carmelo, did you know Mero when you first met him?

CARMELO ANTHONY The culture and the community knew who they were.

You played in the NBA for almost 20 years. You are a future Hall of Famer with extensive business interests. You don’t need this. What made you decide to partner with Mero?

ANTHONY It’s a different vibe, right? Yes, it’s a sports talk show, but it’s more of a cultural show. It’s more about us giving people back their due diligence, their flowers, paying them respect, paying our respects.

What bothers you about sports talk shows?

ANTHONY These are not things that bother me. These are just things that I can see: “Oh, that. Oh, that could be better”, or “they can add this” or “they can add that”. So it’s about thinking more creatively.

Joel MARTINEZ I had this conversation with Melo at the beginning. It was exactly the same way you watch game film. This is how I watch television. You know what I mean? This is how I watch all types of media content. As Melo said: “What can we do better? What is missing ?

Grouper, be honest. Have you ever booed Carmelo?

MARTINEZ Bro, I never booed Melo. Not eleven o’clock. Think about it, brother. Think about the Knicks. I am a 40 year old man. I’ve watched the Knicks my whole life. The closest the Knicks came to that mountain peak was with Melo up front.

Carmelo, do you believe it?

ANTHONY I believe it because I’m being tapped.

Mero, are you cool with Desus today?

MARTINEZ Well, I’m from the Bronx. For example, if someone isn’t actively trying to kill me, we don’t have a problem. You know what I’m saying?

ANTHONY It is a fact.

MARTINEZ Win, brother. You know what I’m saying? Do your thing, you know? If my life is a book, this is the next chapter.

You each have a visitor from out of town. Name the one place you take them.

MARTINEZ I’m taking you to El Tina Fish Fry. Then we’ll go to Locksmith’s for a few drinks on 192nd and Broadway.

ANTHONY I can’t give you my seats. I can’t put the spots there.

Carmelo is so New York that his spots are secret.

ANTHONY This represents me as a New Yorker. You have to know the places to go. It also depends on who comes to town.

Mero, last time we spoke, you told me that being a Knicks fan it was like watching “wild, volatile action.” How would you describe it now?

MARTINEZ Now it’s like, yo, I have Apple in my wallet. It might go up and down a little, but it’ll never crash.

How much will the Nets be mentioned on the show?

MARTINEZ What is this?

ANTHONY I’m not biased. I also give point of view. They are in Brooklyn. It’s “7 p.m. in Brooklyn.” The show is based in Red Hook, Brooklyn. So yes, of course there would be times when the Nets would be brought up.

Look how diplomatic Carmelo is. Are you okay with that, Mero?

MARTINEZ We are New Yorkers. This is the real New York. It’s like, yeah, I’m going to roast you. But it’s love. You know what I’m saying? And I want you to come and talk about what you were roasted.

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David B.Otero

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