Phil Jackson Roasts Carmelo Anthony: "He Wanted To Be A Leader, But I Don’t Think He Completely Knew How To Be A Leader As A Player..."

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(via USA Today)

(via USA Today)

Carmelo Anthony was the shining star of the New York Knicks for 7 seasons before being traded to OKC back in 2017. While that era was one of the best in modern history for the franchise, it was anything but orderly.

During Anthony's last few years with the Knicks, he was at blows with team President Phil Jackson, who was seemingly doing everything in his power to push Melo out.

And now, over four years later, Jackson is continuing to take some shots at him, with the latest coming during an appearance on the Curious Leader podcast.

(via the Curious Leader podcast)

“Carmelo, I think, wanted to be a leader, but I don’t think he completely knew how to be a leader as a player. And I think that the strength of his personality was intimidating to some of the coaches that were asked to coach the team. And so there wasn’t this compliance that has to happen between players and coaches. And as much I tried to interject my own beliefs, I don’t think you’re close enough to the ground in that situation to really be effective in dictating how things are going to be done.”

We weren't in that locker-room during Melo's time in New York (or any of his other stints), so it's hard to say for certain how effective he was in his role there.

But, for what it's worth, many of his former teammates have vouched for him. In March of 2020, Iman Shumpert lauded his mentality and self-accountability. Lance Thomas, Kevin Seraphin, and Kyle O'Quinn all had nice things to say about him during the height of Melo's run with the Knicks.

Of course, without a Championship, there is always going to be a reason to doubt. And, for many, Melo's failure as a leader is part of the reason why he's missing that crucial milestone.

Whatever your opinions on the matter, Melo is going to continue to do his thing, just like he always has.