Charley Rosen: Carmelo Anthony in Knicks' Triangle Had Michael Jordan PotentialMay 17, 2020
Charley Rosen, who has worked with former NBA player, coach and executive Phil Jackson on numerous books and articles, spoke with Marc Berman of the New York Post and let his thoughts fly on multiple topics related to his friend's tenure as the New York Knicks' president of basketball operations from 2014 to 2017.
Most notably, Rosen talked about ex-Knick and current Portland Trail Blazers forward Carmelo Anthony, who he said would have been "unstoppable" like NBA legend Michael Jordan if he embraced Jackson's triangle offense:
"Carmelo undercut him, telling [Kristaps] Porzingis not to say anything in public about how good the triangle was. Carmelo refused to run the triangle — which is why Phil re-signed him: There was a lot of pressure from [owner James] Dolan. But if Carmelo would've run the triangle, he'd be open on the weakside.
"He'd have to pass and do this and run around, but he'd ultimately have a whole side wide open — 16-17 feet away from the basket. The defense would be too far away to double. He'd have open jump shots and was one or two dribbles from the basket. He'd be a killer. He'd be Michael Jordan. He'd be unstoppable. But Melo was catch and shoot and didn't want to do other things."
This isn't the first time that Rosen has made public criticisms of Anthony. Rosen wrote an article for FanRag Sports (h/t Dan Feldman of NBC Sports) that Anthony had "outlived his usefulness" in New York in January 2017.
Per Feldman, "Anthony took that as a comment from Jackson himself," citing a report from Adrian Wojnarowski, then of Yahoo Sports, that Jackson spoke with Anthony to try to clear the air and separate himself from the piece.
The Knicks went 17-65, 32-50 and 31-51 in three seasons under Jackson's watch. Anthony was there for all three, averaging 22.6 points and 6.8 rebounds per game.
Anthony and Jackson were both out of New York by the time 2017 ended. 'Melo went to the Oklahoma City Thunder, while Jackson retired from basketball.