Jim Boeheim Says Carmelo Anthony 'Unlikely' to Ever Win NBA Championship

Joe Pantorno@@JoePantornoFeatured ColumnistAugust 23, 2016

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 6:  Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks looks on during the game against the Charlotte Hornets on April 6, 2016 at Madison Square Garden in New York City.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2016 NBAE  (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
Nathaniel S. Butler/Getty Images

New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony won an NCAA national championship with Syracuse in 2003 and a trio of Olympic gold medals with Team USA. But according to his college coach Jim Boeheim, that's all of the hardware he's going to win. 

The Syracuse head coach spoke with the media Tuesday, per Mike Waters of Syracuse.com: "He's unlikely to win an NBA title. He's never been on a team that even had a remote chance of winning an NBA title. As a player, all you can do is try to make your team better and every team he's been on he's made them a lot better."

The 13-year veteran and nine-time All-Star made the postseason in each of his first 10 seasons in the league, seven of them coming with the Denver Nuggets, the team that drafted him. 

"Denver hadn't done anything prior to him getting there and he took them into the playoffs," Boeheim said. "They weren't going to beat the Lakers or the Spurs. In those years, they won the championship most of the time."

In the prior eight seasons before Anthony's NBA arrival in Denver, the Nuggets hadn't made the playoffs. In fact, they hadn't recorded a single winning season. 

After winning just 17 games in 2002-03, Anthony and the Nuggets finished 43-39 and made the playoffs as he sparked a turnaround in Colorado. Of the seven times Anthony made the playoffs with Denver, though, he only made it out of the first round once. 

Upon joining the Knicks, Anthony was able to keep his postseason streak alive for another three years, but he once again wasn't able to lead his team deeper than the second round. 

But with the Knicks organization falling on hard times as of late, Anthony hasn't played postseason basketball in three years. Over that span, New York has been among the worst teams in the Eastern Conference. 

After drafting Kristaps Porzingis in 2015 and acquiring Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, Courtney Lee and Brandon Jennings this offseason, things are finally starting to look up for the player that decided to stay with the struggling franchise when he hit free agency in 2014. 

Even still, that likely won't be enough for an NBA ring, which Boeheim realized, per ESPN.com's Ian Begley:

He wants to win in New York. I know the general opinion is if (new additions Joakim) Noah and (Derrick) Rose are healthy then they'll be a better team. It's just a question of if they will be healthy. They've been off and on the last two years. They've both been hurt. I think if both those guys are healthy, it certainly would make a big difference and (Kristaps) Porzingis continuing to progress. If those things happen, they can be better.

At 32 years old, Anthony is still the centerpiece of the Knicks' roster despite having exited the prime of his NBA career. 

Through his first 13 seasons, he has never averaged fewer than 20 points per game, and his performance at the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics for Team USA demonstrated that he will continue to be an All-Star-caliber player. Unless the Knicks shock the world or make further upgrades to their roster, though, Anthony may have to settle for the trophies and medals he won outside of the NBA. 

Stats courtesy of Basketball-Reference.com.


The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.