After sitting out the final months of the season to recover from knee surgery, Carmelo Anthony has been fairly quiet.
Last week, Anthony posted an Instagram of his rehab process, and surprisingly engaged fans who were criticising his commitment to winning in New York.
After one user said he “lost respect” for Anthony after seeing “how little” he cared for the game, Anthony shot back with a lengthy response, saying (edited for clarity):
“First of all, thank you for not continuing to be fan of mine. Too bad I’m not gonna lose any sleep over this. Secondly, me not care, wow! That’s a shocker. Shows little you know about me. Staying in NY shows that I do care. If I would have left, what would you have said then? “Oh, Melo’s wack for leaving. He turned his back on NY.” FOH. You are stuck with me, buddy. Deal with it. If you want me gone, I’ll personally walk you into the front office so you can plead your case of the Knicks trading me. Hope you have bail money [because] they might have you arrested for Disturbing the Peace.”
Anthony has been criticised at times for re-signing with the Knicks on a five-year, $US124 million deal — a few million short of his max. — last summer. The Knicks went on to have a franchise-worst 17-65 season and Anthony had knee surgery in February. Some in the NBA world believe Anthony chased bigger money with the Knicks instead of signing a $US96 million deal with the Chicago Bulls last summer, where he would have instantly formed a championship contender.
When the same fan replied and said Anthony’s big contract altered the Knicks’ cap space this summer, Anthony once again responded.
“I didn’t mess up the cap space. Please, explain to me how I messed up the cap space. According to my recollection, we signed four free agents, got two draft picks. Oh, and we signed another free agent today. So that makes five [free agents]. Along with my contract that you said messed the cap space up. Get your facts correct, kid.”
Anthony later responded to other fans and said it was “fun” and “therapeutic” to respond to critical fans.
Despite a subtly strong offseason, drafting 19-year-old Latvian big man Kristaps Porzingis and landing some solid supporting players in free agency, some people believe the Knicks would be better off trading the 31-year-old Anthony. After missing out on their biggest free agent targets, the Knicks may be facing a lengthy rebuild, which might not fit Anthony’s timeline to win a championship at his age.
Nonetheless, Anthony is apparently happy in New York and ready for the season to begin.
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