Melo was not only pitched against the likes of Whiteside, Pittman and Moultrie but he seemed to also have been game planned against by the Skyforce as early foul trouble had Melo coming on and off the court often in the first half. Fab Melo also did not score much of the first half going 0-4 from the field (unofficial tally by me).
Fab Melo had a relatively quiet night compared to his last two but I would still say that he's been very impressive.
Unable to get his game going with foul trouble in the first, Melo went off in the third quarter (around 58 minutes in for those of you interested). Fab Melo 8 of the 10 points to start the quarter and was a clear factor on the defensive end as the Skyforce were unable to score until around the 8 minute mark
The spark by Melo opened the floodgates as it enabled Maine to pour it in on all cylinders. At one point Maine led by 22 point (after leading by just 3 points at the half).
He ran the floor, connected on two jumpers and a hook shot, and made putbacks.
On defense he was tasked mainly with Whiteside and Pittman. I'd say Melo neutralized both bigs as most of the damage done by the two were when Melo was off the floor.
With much of the first half having only sporadic minutes, Fab Melo only really saw floor time in the second half. He continues to look good on rotations and improved on the offensive end. Questions of his motor and attitude are becoming less and less valid in my opinion.
The one knock for me personally tonight was the fact that he forced the issue a little bricking two jumpers badly in the first half. But the redemption was sweet and I think Melo just took another stride towards becoming an NBA rotation.