Carmelo Anthony understands all too well the pressures of playing for the New York Knicks, something that became all the more arduous during his tenure as the organization fell into a state of utter and total dysfunction under the watch of owner James Dolan.
Anthony’s experiences of those very circumstances affords him a unique perspective when it comes to the Knicks’ continued downward spiral. This makes his recent comments about how Kevin Durant spurned the team that much more interesting.
Speaking recently to reporters, Anthony seems to suggest Durant does not have the right mentality to play for one of the most storied franchises in NBA history, albeit one that obviously has fallen on extremely hard times.
“I don’t think it surprised me,” Anthony said, per Marc Berman of the New York Post. “We all read Durant’s quotes. We know what he said. Whether you agreed with it or not, people have different perspectives about it. It’s not just ‘the Knicks and we’re going to get somebody,’ and it’s a guarantee. Nowadays players aren’t thinking about that. They want to go into a situation where they can enjoy and have fun and not have to deal with that. You have to deal with it in Brooklyn anyway, but it’s not the same. It’s not the same.”
Anthony’s comments refer to what Durant has had to say about the Knicks when explaining his decision to instead sign with the Brooklyn Nets in free agency.
What Anthony had to say further about the Durant-Knicks situation that is sure to raise eyebrows, though.
“Not everybody can deal with (playing for the Knicks),” Anthony added. “Not even a star, but role players. Not too many people can deal with what comes with that. I don’t want to say pressure, but everything that comes along with wearing the Knicks across the chest.”
Anthony arguably is intimating that Durant lacks the mental toughness to play in the pressure-packed environs of Madison Square Garden as the Knicks’ marquee player. Whether that’s indeed the case or not, it’s possible that Durant may elect to respond, given his history.
By: Jason Rowan