Carmelo Anthony admits he lost his ‘joy’ for game of basketball
Carmelo Anthony wants to play for a contending team next season, and a lot of that has to do with him wanting to enjoy the game of basketball again.
With the New York Knicks coming off a 31-win season in which they missed the playoffs for the fourth straight year, Anthony told ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt on Thursday that he lost some of his “joy” for playing the game.
“For me, at this point, it’s all about just winning a championship and having fun playing the game of basketball again — finding that motivation and that passion or keeping that motivation and that passion,” Anthony said. “At the end of the day when you’re not enjoying the game, everything else is just 10 times worse. I just want to get back to enjoying the game of basketball. … I’ve lost my joy for it a little bit due to everything that’s been surrounding me.”
The relationship between Anthony and Phil Jackson turned ugly in a hurry, and Jackson criticized Carmelo publicly on more than one occasion. He also made it clear that he wanted to trade Anthony even though the star forward said numerous times that he wanted to remain in New York, so that must have been frustrating for Carmelo.
Now, even with Jackson gone, Anthony is open to being dealt. While he did not come out and admit it, he hinted that both sides are ready for a divorce.
“They know how I feel and I know how they feel,” Carmelo said of the Knicks. “We spoke, so we have been in communication. At this point, we’ll just see what happens.”
All indications are that Anthony does not want to return to the Knicks next season, and he may be done talking about that with the front office. However, trading him has been a challenge since he has a full no-trade clause and only wants to play for the Houston Rockets.
In addition to the issues he has had in his career, Anthony has also been dealing with drama in his personal life. That likely took a toll on how much he was enjoying playing, but joining a winning team would be a step in the right direction.