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Carmelo Anthony felt ‘fired’ by Rockets GM Daryl Morey

Rockets, Daryl Morey, Carmelo Anthony

Carmelo Anthony hit the very rock bottom of his NBA career during his time with the Houston Rockets. It didn’t take too long for general manager Daryl Morey to hype up Melo’s signing in the offseason, following a 65-win season — but it also didn’t take much time for him to turn around and bring his tenure to an end, lasting only 10 games last season before he was told he was no longer needed in the organization.

“He came in and basically said, ‘Look, your services are no longer needed,'” Anthony told ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith on First Take of his conversation with Morey. “I was like, ‘What? Hold up. What the hell are you talking about? … You telling me I can’t make a nine-, 10-man rotation on this team?'”

Anthony was not happy with how talks with Morey went, saying he “didn’t like how that went down” and that it caused him to doubt his own abilities, despite a well-storied record of his prowess in the NBA.

“That was an ego hit. That was a pride hit,” Anthony said. “I started questioning myself after that. Can I still do this? What did I do? I asked him this. … He just said it wasn’t working out.

“When somebody in power that tells you that they no longer need your services … I’ve been utilizing my services for a long time. For you to tell me you don’t need that no more. I honestly felt that I was fired. I felt like [what] other people go through on a day-to-day basis. People get fired. I honestly felt like I got fired.”

That is essentially what happened. Melo was fired.

Except that when people get fired, they no longer have to work at that job. Anthony had to stick around for another three months, away from the team, while the Rockets put in a G-League player (Gary Clark Jr.) to replace him in the rotation.


More than being fired, Melo was placed on paid leave — which is perhaps even more hurtful, considering there were a lot of other factors that contributed to the Rockets’ woeful start this past season.