Phil Jackson Rips Carmelo Anthony, Questions His Desire to Win


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The this-town-ain't-big-enough-for-the-both-of-us saga between Carmelo Anthony and Phil Jackson continues.

Jackson's latest attempt to jedi mind trick Anthony into agreeing to waive his no-trade class, thus beginning the New York Knicks' rebuild around the senesational Kristaps Porzingis, came in the form of this tweet:

Alright. Normally Phil social media posts take a three-day peyote trip in the mountains of Montana to decipher, but I think I got this one peyote-free, unless my barista this morning is brazen as hell.

The Knicks president is referring to this piece from Bleacher Report's Kevin Ding, who openly questions Anthony's will to win. It features quite a few damning lines:

  • But skepticism about Anthony's ability to adhere to a winning NBA team's existing style of play while not getting his usual share of shots runs rampant, according to league sources. That's why a team such as the Clippers, stuck between a can't-beat-the-Warriors rock and a basically hard-capped place salary-wise, is unconvinced Anthony is worth it unless merely swapping role players for him.
  • But Anthony is who he is, addicted to his individual success no matter the experience or insight put around him to teach him something more.
  • Anthony is a likable person who just happens to be nothing near Jordan or Bryant in will to win.

Ouch. And Phil believes this piece "almost rings the bell."

As for the Michael Graham bit, he's a Georgetown alum that played under Jackson in the CBA.

"Nothing I said made any difference," Jackson wrote of Graham in his memoir. "Whenever I tried to talk to him, his eyes would glaze over and he'd retreat to some dark inner corner nobody could penetrate."

Sounds like if Phil was so sure of Anthony's talents and inability to adapt to a winning environment, he probably shouldn't have made him one of three players in the NBA—joining LeBron James and Dirk Nowitzki—with a full no-trade clause.