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It’s time for the disappointing Knicks-Carmelo marriage to end

July 16th, 2017 at 12:54 AM
Aggregated By Sports Media 101

There is a story Pete Hamill tells about his father, a story about Brooklyn and the Dodgers and how deep the love for the Dodgers was there and how much hatred there was for Walter O’Malley when he took the team from Ebbets Field to Los Angeles. The story is about the day O’Malley died, and Pete calling his father to tell him that.

This was Billy Hamill’s response:

“At least I outlived him.”

It wasn’t much of a victory, and it didn’t bring the Dodgers back. But when he learned that O’Malley was gone the way the Dodgers were from Brooklyn, Billy Hamill was still here.

Phil Jackson, as bad a job as he did in his three years running the Knicks, in the process of fleecing James Dolan out of more money than any sports executive has ever been paid in the history of New York City, will never be reviled by Knicks fans the way O’Malley was reviled by Brooklyn. But there had to be more than somewhat a feeling of vindication – or triumph – for Carmelo Anthony when Jackson was gone from the Knicks and he, Melo, was still here.

But now it is time for Anthony to go. It is up to Steve Mills (who sure outlasted Phil Jackson, too) and his new handpicked general manager, Scott Perry, to figure out a creative way to get Anthony out of the Garden and out of town, even if it looks like Dolan is getting fleeced by some other team this time, instead of by a team president.


Carmelo Anthony survived longer than Phil Jackson did, but now it’s his time to go as well.

(Julie Jacobson/AP)

Anthony doesn’t have to go because he’s a bad guy, because he’s not. He actually handled things with Jackson as well as anyone in his circumstances could have been expected to. No, Anthony has to go because the Knicks can’t go forward with him; because he needs to go someplace where he doesn’t have to be anything more than the kind of 3-point shooting wing man he was for LeBron and Kevin Durant on Olympic teams. What Anthony, as gifted an all-around player as he was when he was a kid at Syracuse and as gifted a scorer as he has been in Denver and New York, has proven by now is that he was never cut out to be The Man on a winning team in professional basketball.

He needs to go to Houston, if somebody can figure out how to do that without the Knicks looking like idiots, something they have so often been on Dolan’s watch since the year 2000. He needs to go to Cleveland. Or even Oklahoma City. He’s not even a No. 2 guy any longer in the NBA, even though that’s what he’ll be if the Knicks can’t make a deal for him. He’s a No. 3. At best, he’s an aging Klay Thompson, but one working off the max contract that Jackson gave him, right before a case of buyer’s remorse that seemed like some kind of allergic reaction.

He didn’t come to New York because he loved the city of his birth. He didn’t come here because he thought the Knicks gave him his best chance to win a championship. He originally came here to get paid. Then he hung around …

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