Karl, Melo meet before game

Carmelo Anthony walked into George Karl's office more than an hour before tip off on Saturday to say hello.

The player and coach hadn't talked since Anthony was dealt to New York last February.

"There's been a lot of stuff said that we needed to clear up. We had some casual talk, some grown man talk and it was good for the both us," Anthony said.

Added Karl: "I'm happy he did. I'm not saying Melo and I ever had the best relationship. But I don't think it was ever even close to what people wanted to write it out to be. I thought we always had the ability to go and talk and get things out and when things bothered me I went to him and when things bothered him he went to me."

Karl said he and Anthony talked about New York and the Knicks' recent struggles [they entered play Saturday on a five-game losing streak].

Contradicting Anthony, the coach said it was not a 'clear-the-air' conversation, though he took a shot at Anthony after the trade by saying the Nuggets didn't have to "handle what Carmelo gives you" on the defensive end after the trade.

At the time, Anthony responded in a tweet, 'Damn, are u serious. Some people never seize (sic) to amaze me. Unbelievable' and 'WHEN THE GRASS IS CUT THE SNAKES WILL SHOW.'

Karl said he had 'never felt' he had to clear anything up with Anthony during Saturday's chat.

"Melo's a good person. He's a good person at heart, deep down inside he's a good person. I think we had many good moments," Karl said. "I'm proud to say I was one of his coaches and hopefully he feels I helped him get to a higher level because I coached him."

Anthony entered play Saturday struggling with his shot, hitting just 25 of his last 75 over a three-game stretch. Karl expressed confidence that Anthony, who thrives in a half court attack, could eventually succeed in Mike D'Antoni's up-tempo attack.

But he believes there needs to be a balance struck between catering to Anthony's strengths and implementing the ball-sharing tactics of D'Antoni's offense.

"I don't think there's any question that Melo is good enough and talented enough that you've got to balance maybe the philosophies of how much you can run and how much you can play with a flow and a speed of the game and then allow him his strengths -- you cannot play away from his strengths," Karl said. "I think Mike knows that; playing to [Anthony's] strengths and also getting him to play to the team's philosophies. I don't think it's that far apart."

You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.