CARMELO ANTHONY ON WHY IT DIDN’T work out with Phil Jackson and the Knicks: ‘Triangle works, but the game is faster’

CARMELO ANTHONY ON WHY IT DIDN’T work out with Phil Jackson and the Knicks: ‘Triangle works, but the game is faster’

Carmelo Anthony made a guest appearance on the J.J. Reddick Podcast, discussing multiple things from his NBA career and future plans. One of the things he touched upon was his time with the Knicks and how he still feels things could have worked out much better for him in New York. When Phil Jackson took over as the team’s president, he immediately wanted to implement significant changes into the organizations, and one of them was the triangle offense.

According to Carmelo, things started to go south when Jackson began to trade players that, in his mind, weren’t a good fit for the system he was trying to put in place. In that sense, Jackson was considerate of the players that were currently playing for the Knicks, and he didn’t want to give them a chance to get accustomed to his plan for the franchise.

When Phil came, it was like I wanna do it, the way I want to do it. I got to bring the personnel here to fit the system that I’m trying to run. If this guy doesn’t fit in the triangle, I don’t want these type of guys. So he slowly started picking the team apart and put in the pieces that he felt would work in that triangle.

Carmelo Anthony via, J.J. Redick Podcast

Carmelo brought up an interesting notion saying the triangle doesn’t work in the modern NBA because it is too fast and limits individual players whose playing style depends on speed and transition game. During his tenure with the Knicks, Carmelo was able to see firsthand that players weren’t comfortable with the system, which transpired on their performance in games.

The thing is that the triangle works, but the game is faster. Guys are quicker, guys are jumping out of the gym. We can’t slow it down when we have a fast break. We can’t play in a two guy front when we got Derrick Rose and Raymond Felton. That is not their game. We need Derrick Rose going up and down the court. We started to slow the game, and this is where the guys weren’t comfortable in that situation, and I was one of them.

Carmelo Anthony via, J.J. Redick Podcast

Despite the initial efforts from Carmelo and others on the team to learn playing within the triangle, it didn’t work out. Carmelo even said he called Kobe and Jordan to get advice and learn more about the system, but the execution was the problem. Another great point that Carmelo made that Jackson wasn’t the coach, so his interaction with the team daily wasn’t enough for them to fully accept and learn to play within the system.

I decided to give it a chance. Let me see if I can figure it out. Let me really learn the triangle. Let me study the triangle. I wanted to become the student, and I talked to Kobe all the time about the triangle and how to do things. It wasn’t hard to learn it, but it was hard to execute it because the personnel wasn’t there, but also Phil wasn’t the coach.

Carmelo Anthony via, J.J. Redick Podcast