LOS ANGELES – If you are willing to walk down this road with us for at least another day, or two or three, we’re going to dip our toes into these Carmelo Anthony rumor waters one more time.
We could have the most significant news in months on the ‘Melo-drama today, with this news from the New York Post that Anthony will decide whether or not he’ll sign that three-year, $65 million extension with the Nets to complete the deal that’s reportedly already in place:
After the face-to-face meeting finally took place Saturday between Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov and Anthony, initial reports suggested the Russian billionaire’s team was out of the hunt for the Nuggets star. Anthony was described as “non-committal,” maybe even unimpressed.
But other indications say the opposite. Prokhorov himself described the meeting as “fantastic” in an interview yesterday with CNBC and several league sources insisted the Nets are still in the running to land Denver’s star forward. One source claimed an “air of optimism” remained around the Nets.
“Don’t bury them yet,” a source involved in the process urged. Another suggested although there might not be anything significant at the moment, that could change.
And whether Anthony goes to the Nets, goes to the Knicks, extends his contract with Denver or stays with the Nuggets and opts for free agency (which means gambling with almost half of his $83 million guaranteed), it will be resolved soon, some think today. The NBA trade deadline is Thursday at 3 p.m.
We will be stunned if Anthony is not dealt to the Knicks by the deadline. STUNNED!
But who says Melo to the Knicks will work anyway? TNT’s Steve Kerr, who knows Amar’e Stoudemire‘s game well, having had to make a decision on whether or not to move him last season while they were both in Phoenix, isn’t convinced that this potential union produces the desired results for the Knicks.
“I don’t think they fit together, I really don’t,” Kerr said. “You’ve got two guys who need the ball. Neither one is a great defender. They are both catch-and-hold guys and in Mike D’Antoni‘s system, it’s all about spacing the floor and catching and shooting and moving the ball. it would be exciting but I don’t think it would produce a champion.”
At this point, it’s tough to figure our what the greatest risk is for the Knicks, trading away what seems like half your roster to get Anthony or gambling that he and Stoudemire will be able to play off of each other well enough to make you a certified contender?
For the Nets, there is no risk. Acquiring Anthony is a winning move for the Nets on every front, were it to actually happen. We’re still not convinced that their chances are as good as some well-respected folks think. If Anthony wanted to seal the deal with them, he could have done it already.
In the absence of anything concrete, we will continue to do what we’ve done for months … and wait for Thursday’s 3 p.m. deadline, since that’s the only real deadline of consequence.