Carmelo Anthony said that he’ll be taking Kristaps Porzingis under his wing, further distancing himself from the idea that he was upset with the Knicks for drafting the Latvian big man fourth overall, as Marc Berman of the New York Post details.
“As far as him going into this season, I kind of feel bad for him,’’ Anthony said. “There’s so much pressure on him. This guy hasn’t played one minute in the NBA. I’m going to try to be a big brother to him and try to take the pressure off. There’s going to be so much pressure he’s never experienced yet. He’s 19 years old, first time in the NBA. This is new to him. A newcomer in New York. That’s tough. I don’t think he knows what he’s getting himself into. I have to be that role for him.’’
See more on the Knicks and their New York rivals, the Nets:
- Derek Fisher has twice reminded reporters that he, and not Phil Jackson, is the coach of the Knicks in response to inquiries about Jackson’s plan for increased involvement with the coaching staff this season, but Fisher resists the idea that he’s feeling insecure, writes Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News. “I was asked a question. I don’t think about it until I’m asked about it. I’m me and he’s him and I don’t get caught up in how much and not enough and it’s my job. I’m the coach of the team. How we do will fall on my shoulders,” Fisher said. “It doesn’t matter who says what or how many percentages or times we meet and watch film or whatever. It’s on me. And I’m comfortable with that. I wouldn’t have accepted the job if I wasn’t comfortable with it.”
- The Knicks convinced Kevin Seraphin that they have room for him to contribute, a key in persuading him to sign with New York after he felt frustration about his lack of playing time with the Wizards last season, as he explained to reporters, including Berman, who writes in a separate piece. Seraphin signed a one-year, $2.814MM deal with the Knicks after averaging 15.6 minutes per game in 79 appearances for Washington this past season.
- Thaddeus Young cited his family’s comfort in the New York area as one reason he decided to opt out and re-sign with the Nets instead of opting in for the coming season, notes Mike Mazzeo of ESPNNewYork.com. Young, believed to be the first Nets player to live in Brooklyn since the franchise moved there three years ago, inked a four-year, $50MM deal in July after turning down a nearly $10.222MM player option.
- Joe Johnson wasn’t exactly fond of Deron Williams, sources told Mike Mazzeo of ESPNNewYork.com, and Johnson expressed puzzlement Monday about why Williams would buy his way off the Nets, as Mazzeo details. Williams gave up all but about $27.5MM of the nearly $43.374MM left on his contract to escape Brooklyn, but, “It’s not that bad here,” Johnson insists.
- Johnson, 34, also hinted at retirement, saying that he plans to play beyond this season, the last one on his contract with the Nets, but not ruling out a change of heart. “God willing, as long as I’m healthy I’ll continue to play,” Johnson said, as Mazzeo relays in the same piece. “I don’t think it’s my last, but we’ll see.”