Carmelo Anthony had some off-the-court business to tend to before the New York Knicks tipped off against the Boston Celtics at Madison Square Garden on Sunday.
And it involved the Knicks' star forward playing the role of Carmelo Claus and delivering a Christmas blessing.
Hours before the game, Melo gifted fan Jarrell Lara with a brand-new car.
Jarell, 17, is in remission after completing 18 months of chemotherapy treatment earlier this year due to a rare cancer called Langerhans cell histiocytosis, as reported by ESPN.
The NBA superstar's Carmelo Anthony Foundation, in addition to the Garden of Dreams Foundation and Kia, thought that Lara was more than deserving of the new wheels because of what he endured.
And when Melo presented him with the key to the vehicle, Jarell and his family were overcome with emotion — the teen's mom, Anne Lara, even telling the Knicks forward, "God bless you," as she wept uncontrollably. ESPN reports that she quit her job as a medical assistant to help take care of her son.
Take a look at the touching scene.
"I don't think you can put that in words," Anthony told ESPN after hugging each member of Lara's family and wishing them a Merry Christmas. "That is a family that I have gotten a chance to know. My foundation donated a car to them, working with Kia [and the Garden of Dreams] ... and just to see the expression on their faces, the son, one of the kids wanted to cry but held it in ... that is what it is all about."
Jarell couldn't believe Melo's grand gesture.
"I thought someone was punking me," Jarell told MSGNetworks.com of the moment that he saw the brand-new Kia sitting backstage at the Garden. "It hasn't sunk in. It's a blessing from God. There are so many people [that] Carmelo Anthony can help, and he chose to help me. It's the greatest Christmas you could ask for."
He added: "I'm a strong person. I never thought I wouldn't make it. I had some tough days, but on those days, knowing Carmelo had my back helped me get through."
Although the Knicks lost to the Celtics, 119-114, Melo was definitely a winner this Christmas.
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(Photo: Rob Carr/Getty Images)
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