Carmelo Anthony’s final meeting with Phil Jackson, Derek Fisher and the New York Knicks did not nothing but increase Melo’s confidence about the team’s future, according to a new report from Yahoo Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski.
All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony probed New York Knicks management on the franchise’s plan to restore a contending roster and left his final free-agency meeting largely aligned with president Phil Jackson’s vision, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Anthony had direct questions for Jackson and coach Derek Fisher during a Thursday meeting in Los Angeles, and Anthony’s increased confidence with the Knicks’ direction – which includes a maximum contract offer of five years and $129 million – has strengthened the franchise’s chances of re-signing Anthony, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
After it seeming likely that Carmelo would ultimately ditch the Knicks and head to the Chicago Bulls or Houston Rockets this summer, all signs are pointing to a return to New York.
While the fact that Anthony can receive the most money by staying put (the Knicks can offer him a five-year deal worth $129 million) seems to be a big reason why he’s leaning towards a return, it appears management’s assurance to him that he is wanted has also been a factor.
In the meeting that included general manager Steve Mills, Jackson dispelled doubts that he was indifferent about Anthony staying with the Knicks, sources said. New York officials have made it clear to Anthony that they need him on the roster to have a chance to attract star players in free agency, sources said. After a week of franchises fawning over him during recruiting trips to Chicago, Houston, Dallas and the Los Angeles Lakers, Anthony needed to hear that enthusiasm out of the Knicks’ top management
Wojnarowski reports Anthony is expected to make a final decision this weekend. The seven-time all-star averaged 27.4 points and 8.1 rebounds last season.