Kristaps Porzingis highlight reels or not, the New York Knicks are struggling—and their true superstar is unhappy about it.
Carmelo Anthony and his Knicks are 10-12 on the season and were staring up at 11 teams in the Eastern Conference standings as of Tuesday. While being two games under .500 is a plus compared to last year’s 17-65 campaign, when Anthony only played 40 games because of injuries, the forward commented on the losing, per Al Iannazzone of Newsday:
Losing is frustrating. I don’t want this to be an ongoing situation or an ongoing feeling where we have to come into the locker room and explain why we’re losing basketball games. Things that happened on the court, I probably thought should’ve went my way. That can be frustrating at times. It seems like it’s just starting to become repetitive now.
New York has lost six of its last eight games, and Anthony is shooting an abysmal 36.6 percent from the field in his last five outings. His comments come on the heels of a 6-of-18 performance during Monday’s loss to the Dallas Mavericks at Madison Square Garden.
Despite the disappointment with the recent play, Anthony looked ahead to a three-game road trip starting Wednesday with cautious optimism, per Iannazzone:
I’m not getting concerned. I just don’t like losing. I don’t want to get used to that feeling, coming in the locker room every day and have to explain why we’re losing basketball games. That’s a feeling that I don’t want to get used to.
It’s hard to say what has to change. This road trip is a big road trip for us, that’s the only thing that I can say. It can either go two ways: it can go good for us or it can go bad for us. So we got an opportunity to do something good on this road trip.
If the Knicks are going to turn things around, it has to start with the face of the franchise. After his recent struggles, the former Syracuse star is averaging 21.5 points a game behind 40.6 percent shooting from the field. The shooting percentage would be a career worst if it held, and the point total would be his lowest since his second campaign in the league in 2004-05.
Anthony’s frustration with losing is interesting when juxtaposed with his decision to re-sign with the Knicks before the 2014-15 season with a five-year deal worth more than $124 million, per Spotrac.com. According to Ian Begley of ESPN.com, he was choosing between New York and the Chicago Bulls during the days before he inked the contract.
The money is certainly nice, but it is easy to speculate whether Anthony would be happier winning in a Bulls uniform alongside the likes of Jimmy Butler, Derrick Rose and Pau Gasol. Perhaps Anthony would have been enough for Chicago to overcome the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference if he chose the Windy City.
Alas, Anthony elected to remain in New York and is now stuck on a losing team that likely won’t be ready to compete until the 31-year-old is past his prime. No wonder he is frustrated.