Carmelo Anthony’s resolve to stay with the New York Knicks has reportedly been hardened thanks to Phil Jackson’s passive-aggressive campaign to get him out of town. On Tuesday, Jackson used his Twitter account to send a shot across Anthony’s bow, but that hasn’t made the nine-time All-Star more eager to leave. Quite the opposite according to Adrian Wojnarowski.
A source told The Vertical that Jackson was “underestimating Melo’s willingness to stay.” That’s terrible news for the Knicks, who seem hell-bent on moving Anthony and starting a full-scale rebuild centered on Kristaps Porzingis. The problem is, moving the 32-year-old forward will be incredibly difficult given his declining play and the two years and $56.2 million left on his contract after this year. The Knicks will also owe Anthony a $9.5 million bonus if he’s traded.
New York has reached out to the Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Clippers to discuss a potential deal, but interest has been tepid at best. The Knicks are also clearly asking for too much in return. Anthony isn’t the player he once was and he’s not a guy who is earning his contract anymore.
Anthony has a no-trade clause, so he doesn’t have to approve a trade anywhere, meaning he and the Knicks would have to work together to find a solution amenable to both parties. Apparently Jackson’s penchant for communicating publicly instead of in person has irked Melo and damaged the relationship between the two, making a deal even harder. If anything, Anthony appears less likely to approve a deal unless it’s a perfect scenario for him.
So basically the point of this report is the following: the Knicks are a complete mess.