Former Denver Nuggets head coach George Karl said Tuesday on Twitter multiple users of the social media platform sent him death wishes after his critique of Carmelo Anthony.
Karl tweeted the following about the backlash he has received from a previous tweet about Melo:
On Monday, Karl tweeted a joke about Melo's lack of team play and defense during his time with the Nuggets in response to a comment Anthony made about wanting to win a championship:
Karl coached the Nuggets for nine seasons from 2004 to 2013, and Anthony was on the team for parts of seven of those seasons.
While the Karl-and-Carmelo connection never missed the playoffs, they only made it out of the first round once, when they reached the Western Conference Finals in 2009.
Team success largely eluded the Nuggets during the playoffs, but Melo was an offensive force during that time, averaging 24.8 points per game as a member of the Nuggets and earning four All-Star nods during that time.
Karl later acknowledged Anthony's greatness on Twitter, but he also doubled down on his belief that he didn't commit to team basketball and defense like he should have in Denver:
George Karl @CoachKarl22
I’ve said it before - one of the great scorers the game has ever seen. He’s a HOFer and his Jersey should hang in Denver. <br><br>He Wasn’t a team first player or good defender here in Denver. And it upset us when he asked for a trade especially after I was sick. <br><br>And so it is!! <a href="https://t.co/ZQFUWWraXj">https://t.co/ZQFUWWraXj</a>
Anthony got traded from the Nuggets to the New York Knicks in 2011 and continued to put up big numbers, earning six more All-Star selections and a scoring title, but he still hasn't made it to the NBA Finals, let alone won a championship.
At 37, Anthony has taken on a smaller role over the past couple of years with the Portland Trail Blazers, and he signed with the Los Angeles Lakers this offseason in hopes of chasing a title with LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook.
Melo has a chance to finally win it all as part of a stacked Lakers roster, and to Karl's point, it may take embracing team basketball for him to finally reach the pinnacle.