Carmelo Anthony probably doesn’t have an advanced copy of George Karl’s new memoir, “Furious George,” but he’s going to be asked about it soon. A lot. That’s because the former NBA coach, who spent six seasons with Anthony in Denver, does not hold back regarding his struggles with coaching one of the game’s biggest stars. Specifically, Karl falls back on the long-running complaints and criticisms that Anthony refuses to play defense and he’s a ball hog on offense.
But as Newsday revealed, Karl is much more open and unapologetic about his problems with the former thorn in the Nuggets’ side and current Knicks leader.
“Carmelo was a true conundrum for me in the six years I had him,” Karl wrote in the book, a copy of which was obtained by Newsday. “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 for 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 also is your leader. But since Carmelo only played hard on one side of the ball, he made it plain and simple 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.” (Via Newsday)
Naturally, that’s going to draw a lot of attention in press circles and Anthony will probably take the high road and refuse to answer (or maybe we’ll get the “that’s why I’m still playing and he’s writing books” shade response). But the line that will really draw some fire has nothing to do with Anthony. Instead, in his criticism of J.R. Smith, Karl wrote that he had a “distracting posse.” Whoops.
It’s a shame that Karl didn’t let Phil Jackson copy edit the final draft of “Furious George” before they shipped it to press. He could have saved his peer from the upcoming headaches. Then again, Karl probably doesn’t give a sh*t, considering the book’s blunt subtitle: “My Forty Years Surviving NBA Divas, Clueless GMs, and Poor Shot Selection.”