Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James were the two biggest stars entering the 2003 NBA Draft and have been linked together ever since. Now teammates on the Los Angeles Lakers, their rivalry has turned into a joint mission to win a title together in Hollywood.

Melo's former coach, George Karl, was recently under fire for his comments against his former star player. The ex-Denver Nuggets coach took a shot at Anthony's statement about yearning for a championship after joining the Lakers.

Karl has since clarified his comments in an appearance on Tiki and Tierney, but he also added a little nugget on Melo's view of his new Lakers teammate.

“The truth of the matter is I think Melo wanted to be on the same level as Lebron, and liked competing against Lebron. I know when we played LeBron when I coached Melo, Melo got fired up he was always into the game…I think it was more of Melo understanding he was not on the same level of Lebron.”

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Carmelo Anthony's confidence has always been unmatched, sometimes to a fault. Had you asked the Melo of old how he feels in comparison to LeBron James, there's next to no chance he'd admit that King James was on a different level as he was. But Melo's willingness to step back the past couple of years now has him in a great situation to compete for his first title on the Lakers, a move he would have never made had he let his ego of old take control of him.

Brandon Tierney further pressed Karl on the Melo and his confidence as a player.

While [Carmelo Anthony] comes across as supremely confident, I feel like he's somewhat insecure with certain things, does that make any sense?

“Great players are not as confident as they think they are,” referring to the Lakers star. “Great players have a little bit of a fragile confidence at times.”

Never change, George Karl. He'll surely be watching a few Lakers games to catch his former star in action this season.