The strained relationship between Carmelo Anthony and Phil Jackson has been the center of the Knicks universe for the past couple of months (with a quick interruption by the Charles Oakley Show on Wednesday).
Jackson reportedly is trying hard to trade Anthony, with recent reports indicating that it's having the opposite effect because Anthony is determined to exercise his no-trade clause and remain in New York. Jackson also tweeted out a cryptic message which some felt was a jab at Anthony's unwillingness to adapt his game to the modern NBA.
Bleacher's Ding almost rings the bell, but I learned you don't change the spot on a leopard with Michael Graham in my CBA daze.— Phil Jackson (@PhilJackson11) February 7, 2017
The whole thing sounds rather, well, juvenile. At least it does according to former NBA guard Raja Bell, who weighed in on the Melo-Phil situation on CBS Sports' "NBA Crossover."
"You know what? I'd characterize [Jackson] as a teenager. It seems like he's trying to figure out who he is. Here's the deal, anyone who's ever played for Phil Jackson will tell you that he's a mind games guy. I never played for him, but they'll tell you he plays a lot of mind games with people. ... So he may be the only one who knows what he's trying to do with that.
"But from the rest of our perspectives, he looks like a teenager that gets angry, says some silly stuff, does some silly stuff, probably regrets it, gets himself in more trouble than he should have been in the first place, and is generally trying to figure out who they're going to be as an adult. So in that analogy, who he will wind up being as a general manager. He looks like someone trying to figure it out on the fly."
Anthony has been linked to numerous teams in recent weeks, including the Cavaliers, Celtics, Clippers and Bulls, but it remains to be seen whether the Knicks will be able to work out a deal -- or if Anthony will agree to it.