You know when the couple you’ve hung out with for years – the one that stops by on holidays, the one that’s an automatic invite for dinner parties and has taken more than one vacation with you and yours – makes the sudden announcement that they’re splitting up?

Sure, they bicker on occasion. They’ve got their hot buttons. They, and everyone else, have swept that one time on spring break when things got uncomfortable under the rug. Little things that everyone can look past.

But then you get the call. It’s over. Done-zo. Ying-n-Yang are suddenly Ying…

and… Yang.

You’ve always loved them – both of them. But now there’s that awkward moment when you’re confronted with the notion that perhaps you need to pick a side.

Well, you just got one of those calls on Thursday – from Carmelo Anthony.

It’s official: Carmelo Anthony and the Denver Nuggets are done. The little tiff that began when “Melo” wanted to get traded back in 2011, grew to a decade-long, unspoken cold war, and would occasionally catch a spark whenever some talking head wanted to debate whether or not Anthony’s jersey should be retired in the rafters of Ball Arena, has suddenly gone pure Chernobyl.

Just in case you missed it, Anthony’s comments on the “7pm in Brooklyn Podcast” yesterday made things more than clear that the riff is real.

“This is the narrative they put out there,” Anthony began, setting the stage for a rant that drove an even bigger wedge before the former star and his former team, “that he wanted to leave, he wanted to do this, he wasn’t. Why would you disrespect by even offering that (No. 15) the disrespect in even offering that shows you just wanted to erase everything that came prior to that right there. Fu** y’all, you said fu** me to the dead smack rest of the world, like fu** y’all too. Cool. I ain’t ever said nothing bad about y’all. You boo’d me. I never spoke bad about y’all. I never boo’d you. You boo’d me. You boo’d me when I had 40. You boo’d me when I had 50. You still boo’ing me after a 50-point game. I don’t even get why y’all are boo’ing. You think it’s a disgruntled athlete that didn’t want to be here, spoiled athlete based off of what somebody wrote in the paper. You’re writing newspaper articles then. You running with that then you see me and George (Karl) aren’t on the same page and everyone had to pick a side. Then you put Jokic in the middle of that? He don’t know what the fu** is going on. Maybe he wore 15 because it was Melo’s number, maybe he wore it because he wanted to pay homage but what I believe is that they gave him 15 to try to erase my accomplishments. Now they want you to play that game where you 15 in Denver in this generation it’s Joker and there’s nothing toward that. It’s two different generations. It shows me that y’all are not past that moment. This is old, this is 2010, this is 13 years ago. If y’all are (over it,) y’all are holding onto something that was 13 years ago without anyone having knowledge and understanding of what transpired. So shouts to Jokic on No. 15. You can’t knock him, but it’s still, it was community-oriented and supported when the 15 was given.”

In the words of Nuggets radio play-by-play man Jason Kosmicki, “This… one…is… OVAHHH!!”

If you had any visions of getting the warm and fuzzies while watching a giant No. 15 jersey floating toward the ceiling of Ball Arena sometime next season, you can blink and – in Melo’s not-so-subtle choice of words – wake the fu** up.

Melo’s jersey retirement might not have been in the works anyway – it’s always been a debate – but it’s certainly not happening now. Not anytime soon. Maybe not ever.

They say time heals all wounds, but this one might take lifetimes.

But now comes the hard part: Which side do you choose? You’ve been here before. Are you Team Judy or Team Jerry? Team Cindy or Team Steve? Team Jenn or Team Bob?

Your guy or your team? Melo or the Nuggets?

Carmelo Anthony was and is one of about three or four Nuggets who belong in the conversation of “greatest Nugget of all time.” If you go by eras, it goes something like this: Dan Issel, Alex English, Carmelo Anthony, Nikola Jokic.

And just to get this writer’s stance out of the way, it’s Jokic who has firmly cemented himself as the greatest. Two regular season MVPs. One NBA Finals MVP. And one incredible NBA Championship. Case closed. Game over. It’s Jokic’s claim and it’s not up for debate. His jersey will be retired the very moment the man himself does.

But I loved Melo, too. Melo did his part. Melo put the Nuggets back on the map at a time when the franchise looked like it was about to swerve off the edge of the earth. At a time when Denver needed him most, Melo made Nuggets basketball fun once again – period.

And Melo was a great, great player. That’s not up for debate, either.

His jersey should be in the rafters.

Where the story of Melo gets dicey, however, is when emotion and finger pointing come into play. While Jokic’s story already has a happy ending (one that can’t be unwritten), Melo’s time in Denver came to a halt for all the wrong reasons. Did he want out just to go to a bigger market? Did the franchise do enough to help him win? Was his wife, La La Vazquez, the root of the problem? Like every couple’s quarrels, we may never really know what happened behind closed doors.

Perhaps the franchise and its fans have been petty since Anthony left. Or, perhaps their feelings are justified. But Melo’s recent comments will undoubtedly force those who had any ill will toward the Syracuse product to dig in their heels even further. Would the organization really offer up a jersey number to an unknown Serbian because they wanted to twist the knife in Melo’s back just a bit more? That’s a harsh accusation. Then again, at the time, the wound was still raw and all is fair in love and war. If there’s any truth to that assertion, it was likely meant as a jab, not a haymaker.

One thing is for certain, even if the Nuggets did dangle the No. 15 in front of a young Nikola Jokic, nobody but nobody could have envisioned Jokic becoming one of the greatest players to ever play the game, much less cruising to his rightful claim of Greatest Nugget of All-Time.

Altitude Sports’ Vic Lombardi, once a Nuggets ball boy who’s bled blue, gold, rainbow, baby blue and “flatirons red” through all of it, has audibly and unapologetically pushed for Anthony’s jersey to be retired – even if it’s currently being worn by the greatest current player on the planet.

“It’s been my goal to do that,” a despondent Lombardi said on his radio show Friday morning. “That just got set back 20 years. My work is ruined.”

He might be right. It’s possible that Lombardi may never see two different No. 15s retired in Denver.

The present question, however, is this: The next time you host that proverbial dinner party, who do you invite? Him or her?

Melo or the Nuggets?

Unfortunately, it’s time to pick a side.