George Karl thought Carmelo Anthony was a pain in the ass.
This is clear based on excerpts from Karl’s upcoming book, “Furious George: My Forty Years Surviving NBA Divas, Clueless GMs, and Poor Shot Selection,” in which the former Denver Nuggets head coach takes shots at several players, including Anthony, who spent parts of eight seasons in the Mile High City before being traded to the New York Knicks in February 2011.
“Carmelo was a true conundrum for me in the six years I had him.” Karl wrote, according to excerpts released by the New York Post. “He was the best offensive player I ever coached. He was also a user of people, addicted to the spotlight and very unhappy when he had to share it.
“He really lit my fuse with his low demand of himself on defense. He had no commitment to the hard, dirty work of stopping the other guy. My ideal — probably every coach’s ideal — is when your best player is also your leader. But since Carmelo only played hard on one side of the ball, he made it plain he couldn’t lead the Nuggets, even though he said he wanted to. Coaching him meant working around his defense and compensating for his attitude.”
That’s not exactly a ringing endorsement, though it probably comes as no surprise to anyone familiar with Anthony’s tumultuous tenure in Denver or the nine-time All-Star’s defensive reputation.
The Nuggets ultimately traded Anthony in a three-team deal in which Denver acquired Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Danilo Gallinari, Timofey Mozgov, Kosta Koufos and draft picks. Looking back, Karl still can’t help but consider the blockbuster a win for the Nuggets, calling it “a sweet release for the coach and the team, like popping a blister.”
And if that’s not enough, Karl really swung from the heels in suggesting that Anthony and Kenyon Martin (another former Nugget) not having fathers in their lives negatively impacted their NBA careers.
“Kenyon and Carmelo carried two big burdens: all that money and no father to show them how to act like a man,” Karl wrote.
Sounds like good times were had in Denver.
Thumbnail photo via Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports Images