Knicks GM Steve Mills said he and Carmelo Anthony have agreed not to discuss a possible extension or Anthony’s upcoming early termination option, according to Marc Berman of the New York Post. It’s unclear whether the pact between Mills and Anthony covers the entire season, but it could mean Mills won’t even offer Anthony an extension when he becomes eligible in February, Berman writes.
“Carmelo and I, the first day of training camp, we both agreed we wouldn’t have any more conversations about his ability to opt out or us negotiating an extension,” the GM said. “I’ll stick to what I had agreed to and not talk about his contract status.”
It’s unlikely in any case that Anthony would sign an extension, as he did when he came to the Knicks from the Nuggets in an extend-and-trade deal at the 2011 trade deadline. The new CBA put in place later that year gives players like Anthony much greater incentive to hit free agency, as our Luke Adams explained when he detailed what Anthony could make in his next deal. Anthony has made it clear he wants to become a free agent, which he can do next summer, so the idea that he wouldn’t discuss an extension isn’t a surprise.
Still, it seems odd that Mills won’t at least be talking to Anthony about his plans for free agency, especially considering Mills’ ties to the Creative Artists Agency that represents Anthony. Part of the reason Mills was hired was to help keep Anthony in New York, Berman notes.
Anthony said today that he intends to try to recruit players to the Knicks this summer, a possible sign that he intends to stick around, as Berman surmises, so perhaps Mills and the Knicks are confident they can re-sign the star forward.