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Carmelo Anthony says Mike Woodson holds players more accountable than Mike D’Antoni did

Like any other superstar, Carmelo Anthony gives off the impression that he doesn’t want to be told what to do. He wants to be “the guy” on whatever team he plays for, and it was obvious that he couldn’t be that guy when Mike D’Antoni was coaching the Knicks. D’Antoni’s offense — which is predicated on point guards running the show — never sat well with Carmelo. Whether he forced D’Antoni out of town or not, it is no secret that Melo was less than thrilled with the way his former coach was utilizing his skills.

Now that Mike Woodson has taken over, Anthony seems a bit more content. He has already admitted that he has more focus and energy, and on Tuesday he told the Michael Kay Show that he enjoys the way Woodson holds players more accountable than D’Antoni did.

“I think now guys – we was almost forced to come together as a team and we was under the gun when (Mike Woodson) came on,” Anthony said as Sports Radio Interviews pointed out. “The biggest thing now is he holds guys accountable on the basketball court regardless of who it is like myself, Amar’e, Tyson (Chandler), Jeremy (Lin). Regardless of who it is he holds guys accountable. That’s big especially in this day and age.”

Carmelo added that holding guys accountable was not D’Antoni’s personality — not that it was a bad thing. The bottom line is Melo didn’t have enough control nor enough scoring opportunities with D’Antoni in charge. For him to imply that he enjoys playing under Woodson more because Woodson isn’t afraid to yell at superstars seems absurd.

Photo credit: Debby Wong-US PRESSWIRE

Could Carmelo Anthony’s role in Mike D’Antoni resignation cost him Olympics?

Regardless of what he would like us to think, we all know Carmelo Anthony was the number one factor that contributed to Mike D’Antoni’s resignation. After the Knicks acquired Melo at the trade deadline last season, his and D’Antoni’s relationship went south in a hurry. Now that Mike Woodson has taken over and Anthony remains in New York, you would think the relationship between him and his former coach is a thing of the past. With the Olympics coming up this year, however, that may not be the case.

D’Antoni is an assistant coach for Team USA and Melo is a roster invitee. According to CBSSports.com, a person with close ties to international basketball says that Anthony’s role in D’Antoni’s resignation “did not sit well with USA Basketball authorities.” With other talented players like LaMarcus Aldridge, Blake Griffin and Kevin Love playing the same position as Anthony for the Olympic team and not needing star treatment, the team could decide to go in another direction.

“I don’t even think Carmelo is thinking about this, but I think it’s going to hurt him,” the source said. “I don’t think he’s playing as well as the other power forwards are right now. He’s not a bad guy, but he needs to start playing better because the USA team is looking at that, and Mike is an assistant. It should not be given to him.”

For a short time it appeared Melo may talk his way out of New York, but he ultimately got his way when D’Antoni called it quits. That same talking and his streaky play as of late could ultimately cost him a spot at the London Olympics.

H/T I Am a GM

Carmelo Anthony implies he’s playing harder under Mike Woodson

The Knicks improved to 4-0 since Mike D’Antoni resigned as head coach with a 19-point win over the Raptors on Tuesday. Because reports mentioned D’Antoni having a difficult relationship with  Carmelo Anthony, it’s interesting now to follow how Anthony’s play has been affected. And while his numbers have taken a slight dip (credit that to four blowouts), Carmelo has started looking like he actually gives a crap on defense. He notices it, too, and, as he told Newsday on Monday, he says it’s because of a newfound “energy” that just so happened to show up after D’Antoni left town.

“I think in the last three games, my focus was to have an energy that I haven’t had so far this season, especially on the defensive end,” Carmelo said. “Everybody on this team knows, everybody in the world knows I can score the basketball. It’s not that important to me.”

When asked for his reaction to Carmelo’s comments, interim coach Mike Woodson, well, didn’t really have one: “I can’t explain that, I can’t. I wish I could. We probably wouldn’t be sitting in this position that we’re sitting in today, fighting for a playoff spot.”

Maybe Woodson should take more credit. According to Anthony, there’s a fresher sense of accountability since the coaching change.

“When (Woodson) got the job, I told him, ‘Hold me accountable,’” Anthony said. “I don’t have a problem with criticism. If I can do something to help better this team, let me know. And he’s been doing that.”

Carmelo contends that he and D’Antoni had no beef, but, with that said, it is interesting he makes a remark about essentially trying harder than when D’Antoni was around. Then again, maybe a change at the top was enough to influence Carmelo to make his own changes. Or maybe it’s just because Woodson is somebody with whom he’s more comfortable having an open line of communication.

H/T Pro Basketball Talk
Photo credit: Debby Wong, US Presswire

Carmelo Anthony doesn’t want to be known as a coach killer

After the messy end to the Mike D’Antoni era in New York, Carmelo Anthony wants everybody to know his hands are clean.

Before D’Antoni resigned on Wednesday, he and Anthony were reportedly clashing, with Anthony also relaying a “me or him” attitude to the Knicks front office. Carmelo spoke to the media on Thursday, maintaining he shouldn’t be held responsible for D’Antoni’s departure and that he doesn’t want be known as a “coach killer.”

“Yeah, of course that bothers me because I never want that label on me,” Anthony said, according to the New York Daily News. “I did everything in my power to try to communicate with Coach Mike.”

It was a continuation of the unapologetic Carmelo who on Wednesday desperately tried to convey he and D’Antoni were more buddy-buddy than we thought.

“Me and Mike talked constantly about trying to find out different ways in what I can do and what we can do as a team,” he said after D’Antoni tendered his resignation. “It wasn’t working. We lost games and when you lose games people say it’s not working and of course the blame is on me.”

Once again, Carmelo makes it all about him. When is Carmelo going to learn to check his ego at the door? His ego is what got him to New York. It’s why he’s yammering about himself again now. “Me me me me me!” Rather than worrying about his reputation, Carmelo needs to focus on the team. And yet, for him, that might be asking too much.

But good news for Carmelo: That’s not what the new guy is about.

Photo credit: Michael Ivins, US Presswire

Carmelo Anthony says trade talk is making him sick to his stomach

With the NBA trade deadline only a day away, one rumor that has picked up steam over the course of the week is Carmelo Anthony potentially wanting out of New York. Several reports from the NY Post this week have claimed that Anthony and Knicks coach Mike D’Antoni are clashing, and on Tuesday the Post reported that Melo wants to be traded if D’Antoni isn’t fired.

On Wednesday, Anthony did his best to dispel the rumors using his Twitter account.

Another report — which may or may not have been the work of Anthony’s agents — claimed the Knicks have been tuning D’Antoni out and that he has lost the locker room. Naturally, Melo doesn’t want Knicks fans thinking he wants out already even if he does. He was depicted as the franchise’s savior at this time last year, so it would make him look really bad if fans knew he was demanding a trade. At this point, nothing that should happen involving Melo and the Knicks would surprise anyone.

Carmelo Anthony reportedly unhappy with Knicks, wants trade or Mike D’Antoni fired

The Knicks have lost six in a row, 8 of their last 10, and they looks like a mess again. The New York Post reported after Monday’s loss that Carmelo Anthony and Mike D’Antoni were clashing, and they took it a step further a day later, saying Melo wants out if D’Antoni isn’t fired.

According to the Post, Melo has asked for the Knicks to trade him before Thursday’s deadline. He reportedly is unhappy the Knicks haven’t consulted him more on personnel decisions. He also reportedly only wants to remain with the Knicks if Mike D’Antoni won’t be back next season (which would fulfill some fans’ request).

Interestingly enough, ESPN also published a report about the Knicks’ struggles. They reported that players have tuned out D’Antoni. The report seemed like a hit-job by Melo’s agents with the intention of turning up the heat on D’Antoni; if you read the entire thing, most of the report gives examples of how Melo doesn’t fit in with the Knicks, not what D’Antoni is doing wrong.

As dysfunctional as the Knicks appear to be, it’s not too late to regain success. They could trade Carmelo Anthony and admit that signing J.R. Smith was a mistake. The team beat the Lakers and Mavs without Melo and Smith. You have to wonder why they messed with that kind of success.

Carmelo Anthony was reportedly against Knicks signing J.R. Smith

It may not be his fault, but the Knicks have struggled since they added J.R. Smith to the mix back in mid-February. Since Smith made his first appearance on Feb. 19, the Knicks have won just three out of 10 games. J.R. himself has been struggling, shooting only 37 percent from the field and 28 percent from beyond the arc. According to the NY Post, Carmelo Anthony may have seen this coming. That is why he was reportedly against the Knicks signing his former teammate.

Contrary to popular belief, Anthony was leery of the Knicks bringing in his former Denver teammate three weeks ago and gave a thumbs down to upper management, according to a person close to the Knicks superstar…

…“If it happens, it happens and I’ll be happy,” Anthony said publicly before the signing.

But, according to the source, Anthony was not gung-ho and was “hurt’’ Knicks upper management tossed his advice out the window

As we know, Smith made headlines last week for posting a picture of model Tahiry Jose’s derriere on his Twitter account, which earned him a $25,000 fine from the league. The Linsanity seems to have worn off in New York and the Knicks have reverted to their early-season ways. Smith certainly isn’t the problem, but he doesn’t appear to be a solution either. It looks like Melo is two-for-two regarding personnel decisions this season if you count — you know — him telling Mike D’Antoni to play Jeremy Lin. That happened, right?