The NBA Players Association was unhappy with Phil Jackson for his comments on Carmelo Anthony last month and they are still upset with the New York Knicks team president. NBPA president, Michele Roberts, believes that Jackson was "shaming" Anthony out of New York.
In an interview with Harvey Araton of The Vertical, Roberts insisted that Jackson was being unprofessional with his comment regarding Anthony. She also still wants the NBA to punish the Knicks president.
"I think Phil was deliberately trying to shame 'Melo out of the city. I have players who are unhappy that this hasn't been responded to by the league. The comments do damage to the game because they devalue the player and makes the fans who buy tickets question the value of the investment," Roberts said.
The controversy started last month when Phil Jackson publicly stated that he wants Carmelo Anthony out of New York. Jackson noted that Anthony is "better off somewhere else" and it was the biggest comment made by the Knicks president.
Jackson is doing all he can to get rid of Anthony and they even held a meeting to discuss the situation. The Knicks finished at 31-51 this season and they obviously need to rebuild around Kristaps Porzingis and not Anthony. However, Jackson is making it worse by going in public, showing potential free agents that New York might not be a great destination.
Anthony has a no-trade clause in his contract and he has to waive it before a deal can be finalized, per NBA.com. He has hinted on social media that he might stay in New York and try to outlast Jackson. However, his age and crumbling personal life could factor into his decision.
The 32-year-old superstar will turn 33 later this month and he has slowed down in the past couple of years due to knee injuries. He also recently separated with his wife La La after reportedly getting a stripper pregnant.
All the signs point to Anthony needing a fresh start and he can do it on the other side of the country. The Los Angeles Clippers need him more than ever after another first round exit in the 2017 NBA playoffs. Clippers owner Steve Ballmer is ready to spend a lot of money and he wants Anthony in L.A.
Add the fact that Chris Paul, one of Anthony's best friends, is playing for the Clippers. According to Marc Berman of the New York Post, the Knicks and Clippers could rekindle their trade talks regarding Anthony with a potential sign-and-trade deal involving JJ Redick and Austin Rivers.
Nevertheless, Jackson and Anthony should move on from everything and start fresh. Michele Roberts has only one request with the league, and that is to look at players and executives both ways. He wants punishment for Jackson and other executives who publicly complain about players.
"Our players understand that they can privately complain about how a team is managed but they cannot do it publicly without being subject to sanction but it has to work both ways. If Phil tells 'Melo in private that being in New York is not a good fit for him, that's his right," the NBPA president said.
"But these comments were made in public, and it's very disturbing because Phil gave him the no-trade clause and he has to respect it. He's got to allow a player to make a decision for any reason - to win a ring, for money, home life, whatever," she added.
The league has already fined several players when they complain about the team and their owners on social media and in public. One example is Markieff Morris, who called out the Phoenix Suns in 2015. But with the issue almost a month old, the NBA might not do anything regarding Jackson's comments.