DENVER - Carmelo Anthony spent many nights at the Olympics in his hotel room depressed and wanting to go home.
The Nuggets star was demoted to the bench during the Athens Games, in which the United States lost three times and finished with the bronze medal.
"I would play my (video) games, and hope and pray that it would be over with," he said in Friday's editions of the Denver Post. "I was in my little funk."
The former Syracuse star said things started going wrong for him in the first game, a 92-73 loss to Puerto Rico.
He said getting benched was a shock after being a high school All-American, an NCAA champion with Syracuse and a rookie standout with the Nuggets.
"That would affect anybody," Anthony said. "I'm not saying I'm the greatest player in the world, but I've never sat on nobody's bench."
He said he respects coach Larry Brown, whose Detroit Pistons won the NBA title this year, but thinks the U.S. team would have done better if it played looser.
"He still makes mistakes," Anthony said. "We weren't the Detroit Pistons. We didn't have 90 games to play together."
WARRIORS: Forward Popeye Jones was released. He played five games in his only season with the Warriors, who acquired him last summer in a trade with Dallas. Jones tore cartilage in his left knee Nov. 5 and was placed on the injured list a week later, missing 24 games. Jones has played for Toronto, Boston, Denver, Washington and two stints with the Mavericks.
CONNECTICUT 61, N.Y. 43: Katie Douglas scored 13 and matched her career high with five steals to lead the host Sun.
INDIANA 69, MINNESOTA 61: Tamika Catchings had 12 points and 10 rebounds to lead the visiting Fever. Before the game Lynx guard Katie Smith had surgery on her right knee and will miss the rest of this season.
PHOENIX 70, HOUSTON 60: Diana Taurasi scored 27 and Penny Taylor added 17 to lead visiting Phoenix, which has won six of seven after losing five straight.