Serving as host for The Basketball Tournament’s championship game in his hometown of Baltimore this coming Thursday, Carmelo Anthony emerged to speak publicly during TBT’s “Day of Giving.”
According to ESPN’s Ian Begley, Anthony called the last year “an emotional roller coaster.” Aside from the Knicks’ struggles on the court, the ten-time NBA all-star had to deal with Phil Jackson’s public criticisms throughout the season and is now faced with not knowing what comes next. The offseason has given way to trade speculation galore as Anthony (and his no-trade clause) await word from the Knicks. Both Steve Mills and Scott Perry have said that they have been in contact with Anthony’s representation, but are dedicated to finding a solution that is mutually beneficial to both parties. They won’t trade him if the deal doesn’t benefit New York.
Though Mills asserted that Anthony “could easily be a Knick” come training camp, Anthony said he was uncertain of such chances. He added that he hasn’t met with team brass himself, but didn’t necessarily seem committed to a future in orange and blue. Still, the star forward spoke of his familiarity with Perry and said that the two have already touched base, according to the New York Post’s Marc Berman.
According to Begley, he smiled and added “You know I can’t comment on that,” when asked about a potential trade to the Rockets.
While the Knicks would like Anthony to be open-minded as it relates to potential trade destinations (especially considering Kyrie Irving’s availability and preferences coming out of Cleveland), it’s his right to hold out in an attempt to get what he wants. Frank Isola reiterates that Anthony only has eyes for Houston at this point.
But if that’s the case, New York isn’t obligated to trade him at all. If they choose to keep him, the choice then becomes playing in the Big Apple or not as Anthony evaluates his options.