Carmelo Anthony and Kareem Abdul Jabbar – A Historical Perspective

Well the Knicks laid an egg last night. They showed some fight, (pun intended) coming back from a 24 point deficit to make the game close but in the end it was all for naught. The Atlanta Hawks defeated them 111-102 and until the trade deadline passes the whispers will turn to shouts for Carmelo Anthony every time the Knicks lose.  So let’s turn our attention to Carmelo for a moment. 

I read an interesting article from Peter Vecsey today about the Carmelo Anthony situation and how it relates to what happened back in the ’70’s when Kareem Abdul Jabbar was searching for a way out of Milwauke. Here’s an excerpt from that article.

Several board members of the Bucks were opposed to the agreement. Embry convinced them how serious Kareem was and how much the team had to lose if a deal wasn’t made. He conceded it wasn’t perfect, but advocated doing it out of respect to Abdul-Jabbar who carried the team to the ’71 title and to the ’74 Finals. Oscar Robertson had retired. It was time to build a new foundation.

Several weeks later, the agreement got out. Until then there were a couple of speculative stories.

“We met on Friday,” Embry recalled. “I am certain the board approved deal on the Saturday before the 16th and league approved it on Monday.

Until then there were a few rumors. There might have been a couple of speculative stories.

“Our beat writers would come to me ask, ‘Anything with Kareem?’ ” Embry said. “And I’d say, ‘I can’t talk to you. There’s nothing to discuss.’ It became a non-issue. Then all of a sudden it happened.”

It’s an interesting look into how business was conducted back then and how the media landscape has changed the game. I wonder if Donnie Walsh and the Knicks brass have brushed up on this particular case study. Read the whole article here.