Carmelo Anthony Rumors

Knicks Notes: Anthony, Chandler, Jackson

December 17 at 6:14pm CST By Eddie Scarito

Carmelo Anthony gave serious consideration during his free agency this past summer to relocating to Chicago. With the Knicks off to a 5-22 start, second-guessing his decision to return to New York would only be natural, but Anthony won’t allow himself to dwell on what might have been, Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPNNewYork.com writes. “If I start doing that and saying what if to myself and second-guessing and questioning myself, it won’t be right,” Anthony said. “For me, mentally it won’t be right, so I will not allow myself to sway toward asking myself what if with this situation or that situation. What’s done is done. I kinda don’t look at it. I kinda don’t think about it anymore. That’s in the past for me.

Here’s more out of the Big Apple:

  • Trading Tyson Chandler to the Mavs this past summer is coming back to haunt the Knicks this season, especially since team president Phil Jackson failed to garner an equal return on his most valuable trade asset in the swap with Dallas, Chris Herring of The Wall Street Journal opines.
  • As the Knicks’ struggles continue, the scapegoating of Chandler as the alleged source of New York’s difficulties last season seems more like a smokescreen by the team with every passing game, George Willis of The New York Post writes. Judging by the warm reception the big man received from his former teammates before and after Tuesday night’s game against Dallas at Madison Square Garden, Chandler seems to be genuinely missed, and New York seems to be dealing with much more internal strife than a season ago, sans Chandler, Willis notes.
  • Reflecting back on the trade that sent Anthony from the Nuggets to the Knicks, a Denver executive marveled at how desperate New York’s front office was to obtain a player whom they could have just signed as a free agent a few months later, Frank Isola of The New York Daily News writes. “We were trying to figure out a way to create rosters spots because they were willing to give us anything we wanted,” said a Denver executive involved in the negotiations. “We kept thinking, ‘don’t they realize he’ll be a free agent in July?’ They could just sign him then.” Stripping the franchise of all those assets to obtain ‘Melo is still haunting the team to this day, Isola adds.

Eastern Notes: Davies, Payton, Heat, D-League

December 13 at 12:43pm CST By Eddie Scarito

Brandon Davies was asked about the perception that his former team, the Sixers, were tanking in a deliberate effort to land the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer writes. Davies denied that was the case amongst the players, and said, “One thing I can tell you in the locker room, we were set on winning. We were just going away. I think the games we played in showed that. We lost some close games against some really good teams.

Here’s more from the East:

  • Nets coach Lionel Hollins was disappointed that the Sixers waived Jorge Gutierrez, whom they had acquired along with Andrei Kirilenko on Wednesday, Pompey tweets.
  • When the Magic drafted Elfrid Payton with the No. 10 pick in this year’s draft it appeared the plan was to play him and Victor Oladipo alongside each other, which hasn’t occured much this season, Scott Howard-Cooper of NBA.com writes. But according to coach Jacque Vaughn, things can change as Payton continues to develop, notes Howard-Cooper. “I think overall we’ll see how this combination finds its way,” said Vaughn. “The great thing is I have my eyes, which I always listen to, and I also have stats these days, which I can look at and see how that pairing is doing. A lot of detail will go into it. But there’s no rush from the standpoint of ‘This has to happen now.’
  • The Heat‘s two young big men, Justin Hamilton and Hassan Whiteside, are beginning to impress coach Erik Spoelstra, Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel writes. “They both do some nice things and they both do it in a different way,” Spoelstra said. “Justin is a very intelligent, in-the-right-place type of weak-side defender. He does a lot of things that don’t show up in a box score. He reminds me a little bit of a Shane Battier, does a lot of those intangible things. Whiteside is big and he has that great gift of blocking shots, so you know somebody is in there.”
  • The Heat have assigned Whiteside and Shabazz Napier to the Sioux Falls Skyforce, their D-League affiliate, the team announced. This will be the first trek of the season to the D-League for both players.
  • With both the Lakers and the Knicks struggling mightily this season, and both franchises’ future prospects looking equally bleak, Kobe Bryant and Carmelo Anthony should find a way to become teammates, Paul Newberry of The Associated Press opines. Newberry does acknowledge that the players’ respective contracts would make this a difficult proposition.

Atlantic Notes: Sixers, Kirilenko, Nets, ‘Melo

December 12 at 12:36pm CST By Chuck Myron

Sixers coach Brett Brown referred today to a “fluid” situation, wouldn’t address questions regarding Andrei Kirilenko and Jorge Gutierrez, and said there’s “high probability” that the team will make a “subtle, small announcement” before tonight’s game, observes Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer. The Sixers on Thursday announced the acquisition of both Kirilenko and Gutierrez, and Philadelphia reportedly has held some interest in keeping as a potential asset for the trade deadline, even though reports prior to the trade indicated that Philly intended to waive him. While we wait to see what Philly’s plans are regarding Kirilenko, here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • The amount of cash the Nets sent the Sixers in the Kirilenko trade is $1MM, tweets Robert Windrem of NetsDaily. That leaves the Nets with a total of $2.3MM they can send out in trades between now and the end of June, as the NetsDaily scribe points out.
  • Carmelo Anthony was forceful in his insistence that he doesn’t want to leave the Knicks as he addressed an earlier report that he would be open to waiving his no-trade clause, one that both he and his agent denied. Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com has the details. “Come on, man. After all the work I did to get here and get back here? If I was to get up and want to leave now that would just make me weak, make me have a weak mind,” Anthony said. “I’ve never been a person to try to run from any adversity or anything like that so I’m not going to pick today to do that.”
  • Luc Mbah a Moute and K.J. McDaniels, both free agents at season’s end, join Michael Carter-Williams and Robert Covington as the Sixers whom the team should prioritize keeping, opines Bob Cooney of the Philadelphia Daily News.

‘Melo, Agent Affirm Commitment To Knicks

December 12 at 9:00am CST By Chuck Myron

Carmelo Anthony and agent Leon Rose deny that his client wants to leave the Knicks in the wake of a report from Marc Berman of the New York Post citing sources who say that Anthony would be open to waiving his no-trade clause. Anthony said this morning that he won’t run from “adversity,” tweets Ian Begley of ESPN.com. Rose issued his statement to multiple reporters, including Frank Isola of the New York Daily News (Twitter links).

“Carmelo, as always, is committed to the Knicks,” Rose said. “There have never been discussions about trades or wanting to leave New York. Any story, rumor, report to the contrary is utter nonsense.”

Though Berman heard that Anthony would be receptive to a deal if the Knicks made one with a team he’d like to play for, ‘Melo nonetheless has no desire to be traded, Berman writes. Anthony can’t be traded until Monday, as Berman notes, since he signed a new deal in the offseason. That contract, worth $124,064,681 over five seasons, contains a 15% trade kicker in addition to the no-trade clause that the Knicks would have to pay if they were to trade him.

Berman suggested that the Bulls, Anthony’s second choice as a free agent destination this summer, would be a logical trading partner, though Isola casts doubt on that idea, given what the Bulls would have to give up to make salaries match and Anthony’s knee trouble of late (Twitter link). Anthony makes $22,458,401 this season, a difficult number to move given all of the assets another team would have to relinquish. Brooklyn’s willingness to trade its three most highly paid players would present a numerical match and a chance for Anthony to stay in New York, but there’s been no indication that Anthony would consider the Nets, having struggles of their own, more palatable than the Knicks.

A report earlier this week indicated that Anthony was a frequent source of criticism from his teammates, Tim Hardaway Jr. in particular, and that Anthony had threatened Hardaway during an on-court argument. Anthony and Hardaway later acknowledged the argument but denied any lasting tension between them, and Anthony said that he hadn’t noticed himself as a particular target of blame for the struggles of the Knicks, who are just 4-20 to begin the season.

Atlantic Notes: Knicks, De Colo, Celtics

December 11 at 6:10pm CST By Eddie Scarito

It might be time for the Knicks to end any thoughts of rebuilding the franchise around their existing core, and change their focus to completely tearing down their roster instead, Harvey Araton of The New York Times writes. The only thing that should prevent New York from doing so is if it can add a premier free agent next summer to partner with Carmelo Anthony, notes Araton. But team president Phil Jackson had admitted that he worries that this season’s disastrous turn will make New York an unattractive option to potential free agents like Marc Gasol and LaMarcus Aldridge, both of whom the Knicks would love to sign, Araton adds.

Here’s more out of the Atlantic Division:

  • Despite losing their last 10 games, the Knicks‘ biggest concern right now is Anthony’s left knee, Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com writes. According to Anthony, surgery is the last option that he will consider, Begley notes. “I’m not even looking forward to even discussing the surgery or anything like that,” Anthony said. “I’ll explore as many other options as I can before I go under the knife and get surgery. We really don’t know exactly what’s the problem.”
  • The Celtics have recalled James Young and Dwight Powell from the Maine Red Claws, their D-League Affiliate, the team announced. In Maine’s win over Delaware last night, Powell contributed 19 points and nine rebounds in 23 minutes of action. Young also dropped 19 points, including nailing five three-pointers in seven attempts.
  • The bad news regarding Young’s latest trip to the D-League is that he injured his shoulder and will be out indefinitely, Julian Edlow of WEEI 93.7 FM reports. “I guess his shoulder subluxed and they’re doing more tests to see the extent of the injury,” Celtics coach Brad Stevens said. “Those can be very, very short-term things or they can be a little bit longer, but that’s the extent of what I know. He’s getting X-rays right now.”
  • The Raptors and other NBA teams reached out last summer to express their interest in Nando De Colo, who wanted to re-sign with Toronto, but those clubs were too late, since he’d already committed to sign with CSKA Moscow, David Pick Of Basketball Insiders reports.
  • The Knicks are unlikely to make any deals that would impact their cap space for next season unless they can acquire All-Star level player, Chad Ford of ESPN.com reports in his weekly chat.

Chuck Myron contributed to this post.

Atlantic Rumors: Kirilenko, Sixers, Nets, Knicks

December 11 at 10:00am CST By Chuck Myron

Earlier reports have suggested that Andrei Kirilenko would be interested in playing again in February, once a family matter involving his wife is resolved, but it’s an iffy proposition whether Kirilenko will play at any point this season, USA Today’s Jeff Zillgitt hears (Twitter links). Sixers officials are trying to convince Kirilenko that he should remain with Philadelphia once the trade goes through, though he’s not pleased with the idea, as John Gonzalez of CSNPhilly.com hears (Twitter link). The Sixers, who see Kirilenko as a valuable asset whom they could flip at the February 19th trade deadline, according to Gonzalez, would ultimately have the power to keep Kirilenko on the roster this season no matter how he feels about it once the Nets trade is complete. However, it looks as though they’d prefer to give his roster spot to someone they could put on the court if Kirilenko’s not willing to play for them. There’s plenty more on the Kirilenko trade amid the latest from the Atlantic Division:

  • The Nets have an agreement to sign a player to fill the roster vacancy that the Kirilenko trade is set to create, tweets Robert Windrem of NetsDaily . That advances an earlier report from Tim Bontemps of the New York Post, who heard the team had someone lined up for that opening (Twitter link). The identity of the soon-to-be signee is unknown, but it’s not an eye-catching name, according to the NetsDaily scribe.
  • Brooklyn will be able to create a $3.3MM trade exception from the Kirilenko deal, a league source tells Windrem (Twitter link). The precise value of that exception will probably be $3,326,235, equivalent to Kirilenko’s salary, since the identical minimum salaries of Brandon Davies and Jorge Gutierrez would essentially cancel each other out, but that won’t be entirely clear until after the trade is official.
  • Knicks teammates Carmelo Anthony and Tim Hardaway Jr. confirmed that they engaged in an argument during last week’s loss to the Nets, but they don’t think it’s emblematic of a rift between the two of them, as a report Wednesday portrayed it to be. Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com has the details.
  • Anthony also denied that other players are holding him entirely responsible for the team’s struggles, and he also says that he and the other Knicks players don’t harbor doubts about the triangle offense, as Begley relays in the same piece.

Atlantic Notes: Sixers, Nets, Celtics, Knicks

December 10 at 4:41pm CST By Eddie Scarito

A number of experts around the NBA opine that the Sixers have a brighter future than the Knicks, Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv writes. When Zagoria asked an NBA executive which franchise is in a better position to improve, the executive said, “If [Joel] Embiid is Hakeem Olajuwon instead of Greg Oden, the answer is Philly. The Knicks have one first-round pick in the next two years, zero second-round picks and zero worthwhile International Rights guys. Philly has two first-round picks this year, four second-round picks in the next two and the rights to [Dario] Saric and [Vasilije] MicicCarmelo Anthony is better than any current 76er but Philly has a far better coach [Brett Brown] and more talented young players. The Knicks need to start building a roster and stop waiting for a miracle free agent. There are too many destination markets with cap room and better rosters and a weak ’15 free agent class.”

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Despite the recent reports that the Nets are willing to trade Deron Williams, Brook Lopez, and Joe Johnson, Williams isn’t concerned he might be dealt, Tim Bontemps of The New York Post writes. “I’m not worried about it, man,” Williams said. “I’m a Net until they tell me otherwise. It is what it is. It’s a business, so stuff like [trade rumors] happens. I don’t see any problem [dealing with it]. Brook [Lopez] has dealt with it, so I don’t see it being a problem for him, and I don’t think Joe [Johnson] is too worried about it. No matter what’s being written or whatever, I’m still here. I’m still a Net. My priority is to play for this organization.”
  • Celtics coach Brad Stevens has been using Marcus Smart during the fourth quarters of recent games at the expense of playing time for Rajon Rondo. But no matter how well Smart plays, the idea of him replacing Rondo as a starter this season would be crazy, A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com opines. If things ever get to the point where that becomes a serious consideration, Boston would just as soon trade Rondo rather than have him become Smart’s backup, but the rookie’s steady progression can do nothing but hurt Rondo’s trade value in the eyes of potential suitors, Blakely adds.
  • After a horrendous 4-19 start to the season, the Knicks could be looking at even more difficulties ahead. Anthony has been playing in pain all season courtesy of a sore left knee, and now he may require surgery to correct the problem, which would keep him out of action indefinitely, Frank Isola of The New York Daily News reports.

Knicks Rumors: Smith, Fisher, ‘Melo, Hardaway

December 10 at 11:30am CST By Chuck Myron

J.R. Smith is the Knicks player whom the team would most like to trade, sources tell Chris Broussard of ESPN.com. That’s unsurprising, since the Knicks had reportedly been having internal discussions over a period of several months about how to trade the swingman. The Pacers have been the team most recently linked to Smith, but there haven’t been new developments on that front for a few weeks. Broussard has more on what appears to be rampant dysfunction inside the 4-19 Knicks, as we detail amid the latest on the blue-and-orange:

  • Knicks players are frustrated with coach Derek Fisher‘s reliance on the triangle offense, his defensive scheme, and his stoic demeanor on the sidelines, Broussard hears. Fisher recently expressed that he felt that his players had doubts about the triangle, while team president Phil Jackson pointed to a lack of discipline and order and a resistance to culture change among the players.
  • There’s a general sense of discord within the locker room, with Carmelo Anthony a frequent target of complaints from teammates, sources tell Broussard. Anthony and Tim Hardaway Jr. are particularly at odds, and Anthony threatened to fight Hardaway at one point, though no physical confrontations have taken place, Broussard hears.
  • Jackson chalked up the reason the Knicks have lost several close games to what he called a “loser’s mentality,” but Anthony doesn’t see it like that, as Marc Berman of the New York Post relays. “Losing mentality, a lot of people will try to decipher that in their own different way,’’ Anthony said Tuesday, before the Knicks lost again, to the Pelicans. “You ask 10 people, you get 10 different opinions on what that really means. I know we don’t have a losing mentality.’’

Durant, ‘Melo, Love Spoke Of Playing Together

December 5 at 1:44pm CST By Chuck Myron

Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony and Kevin Love have discussed the idea of one day playing together, whether it be in the NBA or on Team USA, Love tells Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPNNewYork.com. The subject came up when the three 2012 Olympic teammates were with each other as they trained this summer in a Los Angeles gym.

“I think naturally being around each other this summer and the Olympics and just in common passing, we have always talked about the opportunity to obviously play against each other but playing with each other as well,” Love said. “It is always something fun to think about when you have a bunch of guys in the gym this summer. And if not on our respective teams, then maybe at the Olympics.”

It would seem the next Olympics would be a much more likely venue for a reunion than the NBA, given Anthony’s new contract with the Knicks, which runs through 2018/19 with a player option for that season, and Love’s continued insistence that he plans a long-term future with the Cavs. Durant has given no clear signal of what he intends to do when his contract with the Thunder runs out in 2016, but it would be a “long shot, likely even a pipe dream” for the Knicks to land a superstar of Durant’s caliber to play alongside Anthony, Youngmisuk writes. The Knicks are reportedly pessimistic about their chances of attracting Marc Gasol this summer.

Love spoke of his admiration for New York basketball over the summer, as Youngmisuk notes, and the power forward called the Knicks “a great franchise to be a part of” in a recent interview with Steve Serby of the New York Post, though he made it clear to Serby that he wants to stay in Cleveland. Love can opt out of his deal this summer or opt in and align his free agency with that of Durant’s in 2016. Still, there seems little chance that he’d end up leaving the Cavs.

Bulls Notes: ‘Melo, Noah, Gasol, Butler

December 4 at 8:59am CST By Chuck Myron

The Bulls haven’t been on fire out of the gate, starting just 12-7, but they’re in an unusually advantageous position from a broader standpoint. They have a roster that seems strong enough to seriously contend for a title this season, and they have a pair of intriguing rookies in Doug McDermott and Nikola Mirotic. They also have a potential lottery pick coming their way from the Kings next summer. The Bulls almost landed a superstar in free agency this past summer, but at least one member of the team doesn’t regret that swing and miss, as we detail amid the latest from the Windy City:

  • Joakim Noah attempted to recruit Carmelo Anthony to Chicago earlier this year, but Noah believes the Bulls will be just fine without him, as he told reporters in the wake of a documentary showing just how close ‘Melo came to signing with the Bulls. Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com has the details. “I know you believe [teams] need to have all these superstar players and you have it all figured out. We know what your opinion, what your thoughts are, but maybe the way you view the game and the way I view the game is different,” Noah said to the media. “I come in here every day with the guys and my teammates and we work hard and we know we have ways to go. But we feel like the potential is there and that’s all you can ask for as a player is just have that belief that you could go all the way. It’s a good feeling.”
  • Wednesday’s win after a heartbreaking double overtime loss the night before was indicative of the sort of toughness the Bulls often exhibit, a quality Pau Gasol found attractive this summer, notes Sam Smith of Bulls.com“The resiliency of this team definitely attracted me,” Gasol said Wednesday. “A lot of these guys have fought through adversity in different situations, injuries and stuff and still been able to perform at a pretty high level, all things considered. I thought with my addition things could be even better.”
  • It would be surprising if the Bulls didn’t match any offer for Jimmy Butler this spring, writes K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune amid his mailbag column.