We should think about changing the conversation a little bit, because there is an awfully good chance Carmelo Anthony's bid to win an MVP award died Monday night deep in the bowels of Madison Square Garden, alongside the Celtics' team bus, a maroon ski cap perched on his head and bile percolating in his stomach.

Waiting for a word with Kevin Garnett.

Look, it doesn't matter what Garnett said during the game that set Anthony off — and Garnett has a long history of saying the most vile things in an effort to get under an opponent's skin, most famously when he said Bucks forward Charlie Villanueva looked like a cancer patient because of his bald head (the result of a condition known as alopecia universalis).

What we have learned is that Garnett was trash-talking about Anthony's wife, LaLa Vazquez, allegedly with some colorfully vile descriptions. Given his reputation, that hardly can be described as stunning. You can understand a guy being angry. You can understand how, in a saloon, at a party, that leads to one guy asking another guy to step outside. That is how you probably handle it. Me too.

But these are professional athletes. And the fact is, you just can't do what Anthony did, even if all he wanted to do was talk to Garnett. Not in 2013, with cameras whirring at every angle. Not if you fancy yourself a candidate for MVP, and if you've had a career like Melo has had, which means voters forever will be searching for reasons to say "no" before they study reasons to say "yes." Even if you've spent most of 34 games offering a compelling case for "yes."

Question: Can you see LeBron James waiting by the other guy's bus like that? Chris Paul? Derrick Rose? Kevin Durant? And though Kobe Bryant probably would have been spitting mad just like Melo, the smart money says he finds another way to find payback, a smarter, more satisfying way. That video, and that ski cap, that's not just going to evaporate with time. Voters will remember that. Bank on it.