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Knicks leaked story that Carmelo Anthony told Mike D’Antoni to play Jeremy Lin

Carmelo Anthony has spent the last couple of weeks doing two important things: recovering from injury and trying to convince people he has no problem with Jeremy Lin running the Knicks. Earlier in the week, the team tried to help him by leaking a story that claimed Anthony was the one who told Mike D’Antoni that he should play Lin. If that sounds unlikely, that’s because it didn’t happen.

On Monday, D’Antoni was asked about the story and it was obvious that it was the first he had heard about it. He told reporters he didn’t remember the conversation. It’s safe to assume he would remember it if it actually happened. According to the NY Daily News, it never did.

The Garden also pursued on an image makeover by leaking a story that it was Anthony who suggested to D’Antoni that Lin get a chance. However, D’Antoni denied that account on Monday, which undoubtedly is not sitting well with Dolan and perhaps also with Anthony. It’s like that old Godfather line: “Don’t ever take sides against the (Cablevision) family.”

For D’Antoni to go off script like that was telling and speaks to a larger issue of mistrust between the coach and Dolan, which probably started with Donnie Walsh being fired. D’Antoni could have easily gone along with the tale about Melo advocating Lin but chose not to.

This is yet another example of how desperate Anthony and the Knicks are to convince people he is not a selfish player and will be able to share the spotlight with the NBA’s biggest sensation. No matter what Melo says or how many stories the team tries to plant, the only way we’re going to know for sure is by letting the games play out.

H/T I Am a GM

Jim Boeheim says questions about Carmelo Anthony coexisting with Jeremy Lin are the ‘Dumbest thing I’ve ever heard’

The biggest mystery the Knicks are facing at the moment is how Jeremy Lin and Carmelo Anthony will perform together on the court. When Anthony returns from a strained groin, he will be joining an entirely different team from the one he left. At the moment, this is Jeremy Lin’s team. Can Carmelo deal with that? On Wednesday, Anthony insisted he is not a selfish player and said he’s offended that people think that. His college coach at Syracuse, Jim Boeheim, for whom Melo won a national championship, couldn’t agree more.

“I’ve got to be honest with you, with all the things I’ve heard over the years, and you hear a lot of crazy things, this is the dumbest I’ve ever heard,” Boeheim said during an interview with the Michael Kay Show on Wednesday. “He won a national championship playing with guys here and took shots, but didn’t dominate the ball. He won on the Olympic team and didn’t dominate the ball, so he’s proven he can play with guys.

“I think sometimes in Denver he was put in position where he had to make plays, but he’s always shot a good field goal percentage. … Nobody’s ever said Kobe dominates the ball, I guess, or LeBron or those guys. Of course they do. The best offensive players are going to have the ball. I think the point guard situation will help Carmelo and help Amar’e because it gives them somebody to make plays.

“(Lin has) another weapon coming back. This is a great thing. Instead of passing the ball to a guy that’s a questionable shooter, he’s passing it to a guy that can shoot and score. … There will be no chemistry issue on offense whatsoever. Jeremy Lin’s a good point guard. He sets people up, and the fact that he can score makes him a better passer.”

From the sound of it, Boeheim feels more strongly about it than Anthony does. The questions about the two coexisting are as much a spotlight issue as they are an X’s and O’s concern. If Anthony can embrace the fact that the offense is going to run through Lin, the Knicks will be dangerous. If Boeheim’s prediction comes to fruition, the return of Anthony could make New York the best team in the Eastern Conference.

Carmelo Anthony ‘I’m not a selfish player’

The Knicks have won six games in a row since Jeremy Lin began playing significant minutes. Four of those wins were without Amar’e Stoudemire who was grieving the loss of his brother. Five of those wins came essentially without Carmelo Anthony (he played six minutes in a win over the Jazz). Because of the team’s success without him, there are a lot of people wondering if the team will continue winning when Melo returns. Melo responded to the critics Wednesday, particularly the ones who call him a selfish player.

“That’s like a slap in the face. I’ve never been a selfish player,” Anthony insisted during an interview on ESPN. “None of my teammates that I’ve ever played with said I was a selfish player, nobody.

Carmelo says the selfish label bothers him.

“I’m human at the end of the day so it’s like ‘Damn, where is that coming from?’ I know I’m not a selfish player.The people around me know I’m not a selfish player. I do everything I can to try to make people understand I’m not a selfish player.

He also thinks Linsanity can continue.

“I believe so,” Anthony said when asked if he thinks Jeremy Lin can keep it up. “Right now he’s playing out of his mind, completely out of his mind. When I come back I think I can take some of that pressure off of him.”

Carmelo has been labeled as the reason for the Knicks’ struggles considering how much the team traded to Denver to get him. We’ve seen since last season that he isn’t a good fit in Mike D’Antoni’s offense. But with a good point guard running the show, will he fit in now? That remains to be seen. One thing’s for sure, Melo will do everything possible to show people he’s not selfish.

Carmelo Anthony says Jeremy Lin is the Knicks version of ‘Rudy’

Over the past week or so, we have heard plenty of entertaining Jeremy Lin comparisons. Lin said he takes a lot of inspiration from Tim Tebow and you could argue that their stories are somewhat similar. Both began the season on the bench and provided a massive spark when inserted into the lineup. Lin has been one of the best players in the NBA over the past five games, but for some reason Carmelo Anthony decided to not think before speaking when asked about Lin. If he had, Carmelo probably wouldn’t have compared his teammate to Rudy.

“He’s Rudy,” Anthony said Monday according to Knicks reporter Adam Zagoria. “That’s our Rudy.”

I realize Melo was trying to pay his teammate a compliment, but he did an awful job. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the legendary sports movie Rudy, it is based on the life of former Notre Dame player Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger. Rudy walked onto the Notre Dame football team in the 1970s despite being 5-foot-6 and 165 pounds. He also suffered from dyslexia, which was a condition that was not well-understood at the time and gave him a lot of trouble in school.

At Notre Dame, Rudy earned the respect of his teammates through hard work and a refusal to quit. In that sense, Lin is like Rudy. However, Rudy played only two snaps in his collegiate career when his coach allowed him to dress for the final game of the season out of respect. Lin has averaged more than 20 points per game and led New York to its longest winning streak of the season. I suppose both are underdog stories, but Lin is an NBA superstar at the moment — not a practice hero who is hoping to fulfill his dream of playing one minute of an NBA game. Anthony probably had good intentions, but the comparison he chose is regrettable.

H/T The Big Lead

Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire Hope to Talk Out Knicks’ Problems

When superstars collide, results suffer. For those of you who have not been following, the Knicks are not playing very well. We all know they have the talent, but for whatever reason New York has yet to gel. Slowly but surely, some of the reasons are coming to light. According to the NY Post, Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire are not exactly seeing eye-to-eye.

“We as a team need to do a better job getting Amar’e the ball,’’ Anthony admitted. “I have the ball in my hands. Maybe it’s on me. Maybe I have to give him the ball a little more, help him out with that. We’ll talk probably (today) and try to figure it out together. If I’m doing too much, I want him to tell me. I want the guys on the team to tell me if I’m doing too much.’’

Those comments came after a night in which the Knicks lost their sixth straight game and fans at the Garden booed Anthony.  Carmelo scored 25 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, but he was 10-for-30 from the floor. He’s obviously shooting too much, and a source told the Post it has strained the relationship between he and Stoudemire.

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George Karl Says He Got Tired of Carmelo Anthony Talk, Wants to Beat Knicks Badly

Most coaches would pretend that a regular season game against one of their former superstars is just another game on the schedule. But that’s not how it is for George Karl. Karl rarely hides what he is feeling, so it should come as no surprise that he spoke candidly this week when talking about the Carmelo Anthony situation in Denver last year. Judging by what he said, there are hard feelings.

“What happened with ‘Melo last season, that got old,” Karl told reporters this week according to the NY Daily News. “That got old fast.

“Friends and people who played with you, you actually want to beat them more than you want to beat your enemies. You want to beat people that you were close to at one time and now you’re battling them. Because you know them a little bit more and they know you a little bit more. You get more animated to kick their butt when you play them.”

Meanwhile, the Nuggets are supposed to be rebuilding in the wake of the trade while the Knicks were expected to become an Eastern Conference powerhouse.  That has not been the case through the first portion of the season.  Denver is sitting at a comfortable 10-5 while New York is dealing with a heap of frustrated fans and a 6-8 record.  If the Nuggets go on the road and continue their early-season success in Madison Square Garden Saturday night, it will be the highlight of the young season for Karl and company.

Chest bump to I Am a GM for the story

Carmelo Anthony Won’t Use Crutches for Swag Reasons

Carmelo Anthony sprained his right ankle in Thursday night’s loss to the Grizzlies and he’s recovering. The team apparently wanted Melo to use crutches to help recover, but he refused and went with a walking boot instead. His reason?

“Yeah I had a boot on last night. They wanted me on crutches, but it was messin’ my swag up,” he said after practice Friday. “I couldn’t do the crutches, so they put me in a boot.”

Gotta love it. Melo’s always gotta stay fly. But you already knew how concerned with looks he was, so this isn’t really a surprise, is it?

If I were a Knicks fan or coach, I might be upset. Wouldn’t you be upset if your star player were recovering slowly because he cared more about his swag than getting healthy? Me too.

Chest bump SB Nation via Black Sports Online