Midway though the 2011 regular season, Carmelo Anthony got what he was pushing for so vehemently; to be traded from the Denver Nuggets. After the Knicks sent Wilson Chandler, Danilo Gallinari, Timothy Mozgov, and Raymond Felton packing, it looked like ‘Melo found his new home for good. On top of being born in Brooklyn, Madison Square Garden is known as the Mecca of basketball, a place any superstar athlete would want to put his name into the history books for eternity. The scenario just seems perfect. If you’d ask me personally, I’d think there was a zero percent chance he wouldn’t retire a Knick when his career was all said and done, but that notion seems to be diminishing as each season passes. Or is it?
Although Carmelo has recently been coming out with some disturbing comments for Knicks fans, I just can’t see it happening. Melo would be taking a huge risk regarding the image he’ll portray, but I just see this comments as a tactic to get the Knicks to do the best they can at shifting the roster around to a level that will please him.
When asked by ESPN.com (through Marc Berman of the New York Post) if this upcoming season will have an impact on whether or not he stays in New York, Carmelo certainly didn’t make any promises.
“I can’t do that,” he said. “It’s too tough right now.”
What doesn’t make too much sense to me is, many people speculated that his reasoning for wanting New York was the “bright lights,” with his wife, LaLa Vasquez, being a major part of that. Today, they are saying the same thing about Los Angeles, to join up with Kobe Bryant. Give me a break. I need a better reason then that. Oh yeah, not to mention, who is the Lakers head coach? Mike D’Antoni. Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t Melo one of the biggest reasons D’Antoni was ran out of New York?
So, for a quick recap. You are trying to tell me that ‘Melo will leave New York to play for the coach that doesn’t fit his half-court, isolation style of play, to play with a player in Bryant who is the virtually the only player in the NBA that will hold the ball and shoot as much as him, for the “bright lights” of Hollywood, when he’s already in the Big Apple. How much more can he ask for?
D’Antoni is under contract for at least another two seasons, and he just can’t bank on the Lakers firing another coach for him. The Lakers are currently still paying Mike Brown, so there is no way they can put out money for another coach. They simply can’t be paying three different coaches.
Now don’t get me wrong, the Lakers are going to have enough cap room to make plenty of noise after this upcoming season, so that can be more appealing for him. Although he’s still relatively young, how much more rebuilding can Carmelo go through? The time is now for him to start making a run at the championship.
Many fans want to immediately throw their hands in the air in disbelief when they hear the franchise player is going to opt out of his contract, but what they don’t understand, is that is a smart business move for an athlete. Even if a player is 100 percent sure he is going to return to his respected team, opting out of a contract can simply mean he’s trying to extend his contract for more years. It is about security, and although many of us see this as just a game or entertainment, these guys have families to feed and bills to pay. So in all essence, it is hard to ever knock a player for that.
So basically, what am I getting out of all of this? It is all tactics. It is all about how the dominos will fall in the near future. Will the Knicks find a magical trade for a Rajon Rondo? Will they possibly find a suitor for Amare Stoudemire’s contract? Will Lebron opt out as well, and join the Knicks with Melo? Would him and LeBron want to join up in Los Angeles together? It is just impossible to tell right now, but I am telling you, don’t look into his recent comments of saying it is too hard to make a decision now. It is way too early to be making those scenarios up now. So Knicks fans relax, take a breather, let everything pan out, but I just can’t see Carmelo packing up his things to leave arguably the greatest city in the world.