Report: Carmelo Anthony asked former Bulls player what it's like to play for Tom Thibodeau

Sunday April 13th, 2014

Knicks F Carmelo Anthony has responded to critics who say he cant bring in other stars to play with him. Carmelo Anthony spoke glowingly about Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau on Friday. (Nathaniel S. Butler/National Basketball)

New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony recently asked a former Chicago Bulls player what it was like to play for Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau, the New York Daily News' Frank Isola reported.

From Isola's report:

Carmelo Anthony recently approached a former Chicago Bulls player and asked a loaded question that should make Phil Jackson a little nervous.

“What is it like to play for Thibs?” Anthony said.

Anthony’s interest in Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau can be taken one of several ways. Anthony, who lives and breathes basketball, is merely interested in learning something about one of the NBA’s top coaches. In fact, Anthony will be working with Thibodeau, who was named to USA Basketball’s coaching staff last June.

Of course, Anthony’s impromptu background check on Thibodeau could also be his idea of due diligence since the Bulls loom as an attractive option this summer for the free-agent-to-be.

It's a question that will likely only serve as the start of speculation about Anthony's future, as he is poised to become a free agent this summer. The Knicks have now also been officially eliminated from the playoffs, the first such time Anthony has missed out on the postseason in his 11-year NBA career.

The Bulls have emerged this season as one of the most attractive options for Anthony in free agency, along with the Houston Rockets.

Chicago could have the necessary cap room to make a run at Anthony if it exercises the amnesty provision on Carlos Boozer. Adding Anthony to their roster would give the Bulls an impressive Big Three of Joakim Noah, Derrick Rose and Anthony.

The Knicks are still widely viewed as the favorites to sign Anthony, with their addition of Jackson as team president serving as another moved aimed at securing Anthony for the long-term. They can also offer Anthony an extra year and a contract close to $30 million more.

In his report, Isola also pointed out the fact that as recently as Friday, Anthony provided glowing commentary about the Bulls coach Thibodeau.

When asked on Friday why the Bulls have survived losing key players while the Knicks haven’t, Anthony said: “I have no clue. Thibs is a great coach, his system kind of reminds me of Gregg Popovich’s system.

“You put anybody in that system and it’s going to work. That’s what they’ve been doing. They’ve had guys sitting out all season long, guys that’s been in and out of the lineups and they seem to get it done.”

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