D’Antoni, now the Houston Rockets’ head coach, makes the claim in an ESPN The Magazine feature about him and his wife, Laurel.
In New York in 2012, after Anthony said the team needed to choose between him and D’Antoni, Mike made it easy.
“I just went in and quit,” he says.
“Don’t say ‘quit,'” Laurel says. “I hate that word. You resigned. You walked away. Mutually walked away.”
Mike rolls his eyes and turns to me.
“I quit,” he says.
The Knicks had landed Anthony in a blockbuster trade just 13 months earlier.
The fact that D’Antoni and Anthony clashed is nothing new. Anthony’s style did not mesh well with D’Antoni’s spread-it-around offense. The coach also has said publicly Anthony refused to move to power forward to help accommodate point guard Jeremy Lin.
The Knicks went 121-167 in three-plus seasons with D’Antoni on the bench. They reached the playoffs in 2011, but were swept by the Celtics in the first round.
In his first season in Houston — his fifth coaching stop — D’Antoni’s Rockets went 55-27 in the regular season and are tied with the Spurs 2-2 in the Western Conference semifinals.