Carmelo Anthony revealed the reason behind his unprecedented 15-day suspension, and how David Stern influenced the situation.
David Stern during his heyday was counted among the most influential personalities in the sporting world. He presided over the NBA for over 30 years, and oversaw multiple controversies, which gained him the respect of players and officials alike.
Fans mostly encountered Stern during the NBA Draft announcements, but he had deep roots within the entire NBA industry. As commissioner, he dealt with the serious incidents like the Tim Donaghy scandal and the two NBA lockouts, and saved the league’s face multiple times.
We tend to forget how powerful the man once was. Carmelo Anthony recently narrated a story on his podcast, which shows exactly how much influence David Stern carried. The incident happened after wild brawls between the Knicks and Nuggets in 2006.
While most players escaped with meagre punishments, Carmelo Anthony was suspended for an unprecedented 15 games. Even if the fights had been a little over the top, nobody could understand the reason for such a major result.
David Stern apparently wanted to send across a message to players like Carmelo Anthony.
Carmelo Anthony belonged to Baltimore, Maryland, and it was natural for a popular athlete to have gang connections from such a crime-infested city. Melo discussed his conversation with Stern in his podcast recently.
How Carmelo Anthony found out that David Stern and the #NBA was part of the Feds (after his 15-game suspension – December 2006, Knicks-Nuggets brawl)😳👀
— NBA Analysis Network (@HoopAnalysisNet) September 19, 2021
“And he was like, ‘I know who you with. I know where you live at, and where they [Melo’s gang connections] live at. I know when you close your eyes and when you wake up. Either tell them to stop, or you’re gonna have to cut them off.’ And I was like damn, that’s when I knew NBA was part of the Feds.”
That surely was a menacing statement to come from a league commissioner. David Stern was fiercely loyal to his league, and wouldn’t allow even a speck of dirt near its name.
These are the kinds of stories that reveal the hidden alpha personalities of seemingly timid people. David Stern was the boss, he made the rules, and hell would break loose for those who dared step over the line.