Former Knicks star pleased by team trading RJ Barrett: ‘He’s just a bland player’

NBA: New York Knicks at Cleveland Cavaliers
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Carmelo Anthony, a former franchise icon for the New York Knicks, recently shared his thoughts on the trade that sent F RJ Barrett to the Toronto Raptors in exchange for F OG Anunoby. Anthony expressed his sentiments on the latest edition of his podcast “7 PM in Brooklyn.”

Franchise icon makes brutally honest assessment of Barrett

The former franchise star was blunt and honest in his analysis of Barrett, criticizing his style of play, and the results that have come with it.

“He’s just a bland player,” said Anthony. “That’s not a shot. That’s not disrespect. I ask a lot of people who are Knicks fans to see what they say, it’s just like, ‘He’s good, he gets it done sometimes, but he’s not an exciting player.’ You don’t know if he’s going to get 4 (points) or 26.”

Inconsistency has held Barrett back for the majority of his NBA career

Oddly enough, Anthony’s comments aged nearly to perfection. On January 12th, one day after Anthony’s critiques of Barrett became public, Barrett scored just four points in a Raptors loss to the Utah Jazz. The following game on January 15th, Barrett scored 24 points in a loss to the Boston Celtics.

Barrett has been notoriously streaky for most of his NBA career, and his time with the Knicks this season before the trade shows just that. To start the season, Barrett came out rolling, scoring 20 or more points in five of his first seven games. However, what followed was a disappointing 19-game stretch in which he shot under 40 percent from the field, and reached the 20-point mark just five more times.

Stats show Anunoby has fit the Knicks much better than Barrett since the trade

Following the trade, OG Anunoby appears to be a much better fit in the Knicks’ system than Barrett. New York is 6-2 in the eight games Anunoby has appeared in and is allowing just 100.9 points per game in that span, the best mark in the NBA in the month of January.

Anthony explains the difference between Anunoby and Barrett despite their similarities

Anthony spoke of the difference Anunoby makes for the Knicks despite being, in his opinion, a similar player to Barrett.

“OG is cool sitting around on the wing and cutting and waiting for somebody to swing it to him and knock down a three,” said Anthony. “He still will play defense. No matter what. Whereas RJ, he’s got to score 20.”

Barrett will have his first opportunity to get a bit of revenge on his former team as the Raptors will take on the Knicks at Madison Square Garden on Saturday, January 21st.

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