The Knicks’ firing of Mike Woodson today will have no impact on Carmelo Anthony‘s willingness to remain with the team, and Anthony plans to meet with several other NBA clubs this summer, a source tells Sean Deveney of The Sporting News. Anthony wants to approach the process just as Dwight Howard did last summer, when he sat down with potential suitors after free agency began in July, Deveney hears. ‘Melo hasn’t made a list of the teams he’d like to hear from yet, but Deveney says the Knicks and Bulls are “certain” to be on it, naming the Lakers, Rockets and Clippers as others who might be in the mix.
Anthony spoke in support of Woodson last week, but the identity of next season’s coach will have little effect on Anthony’s free agency, according to Deveney. Anthony has long planned to opt out of his contract this summer, and summed up his thoughts regarding the Knicks and free agency succinctly last week when he said, “I want to come back. I want to come back. But I also want to win.” Deveney’s source reiterates that winning will be chief in the star’s mind, though it will be difficult for the Knicks to improve their roster, given their lack of both cap flexibility and a first-round pick in this year’s draft, as Deveney points out.
Howard’s contentment in Houston this year is helping dispel Anthony’s fears of a public backlash should he leave the Knicks, Deveney writes. The Rockets star endured a maelstrom of negative press amid his departures from the Magic and the Lakers, but that’s died down now that Howard is on a long-term deal in Houston.