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Jim Boeheim: Carmelo Anthony would have been better off with Bulls

jim-boeheimJim Boeheim believes Carmelo Anthony would have been better off signing with the Chicago Bulls than remaining with the New York Knicks — at least from a basketball standpoint.

Boeheim, who coached Anthony on Syracuse’s 2003 NCAA national championship team, basically said Monday that he thinks Carmelo would have a better chance of winning in Chicago.

“Just from a basketball point of view it would have been better to go to Chicago because they’ve got better players,” Boeheim told Ian Begley of ESPNewYork.com. “But he wanted to be in New York and he wants to see if they can turn it around there. I think that’s a great thing.”

Anthony’s decision probably had a lot to do with the $50 million more the Knicks were able to offer him. I don’t care who you are or how much money you have made — turning down that kind of sum is extremely difficult. Plus, New York brightened its future by hiring Phil Jackson as head of its basketball operations department. If not for that move, Boeheim believes ‘Melo would have moved on.

[Related: Jim Boeheim told Carmelo Anthony not to be afraid to leave New York]

“He stayed because he believes Phil,” he said. “Derek Fisher, he knows the game. If you’re going to pick a coach who hasn’t coached, he would be the guy I would pick. I think he’s a great choice. I talked to Derek a little bit. I think he’s really smart. I think he’ll be a really good coach. I think they’ll show significant improvement this year. If they get a couple of guys down the road, I think they’ll be good.”

Carmelo is banking on significant improvement. Last season was the first time in his 11-year NBA career that Anthony did not play in a postseason game. He said earlier this week that he is certain the Knicks will not miss the playoffs again.

“Yeah, I think so for sure,” Anthony said when asked if New York will make the postseason, via Fred Kerber of the New York Post. “Absolutely.”

With Joakim Noah, Taj Gibson and a healthy Derrick Rose, it would be surprising if the Bulls aren’t better than the Knicks next season. Boeheim certainly isn’t the only person who sees that.

Carmelo Anthony getting skinny to better fit triangle offense

Carmelo-Anthony

Carmelo Anthony appears to be on the LeBron James diet, as a recent photo the New York Knicks star posted on Instagram showed him looking very slim. Like James, Anthony has entered the second half of his career and is making more of an effort to preserve his health. He also wants to keep up with the triangle offense.

According to Marc Berman of the New York Post, Anthony had Phil Jackson’s famous system in mind when he decided to shed some weight.

“He wants to be as athletic as he was when he was a rookie,” a source told Berman. “Plus he wants to be a facilitator in the triangle and speed will help that.”

Carmelo was listed at 240 pounds with the Knicks last season, but many believe he was closer to 250. When he first entered the league with the Denver Nuggets in 2003, Anthony was listed at 230.

Carmelo has supposedly gone to a mostly no-carb diet, which is the same thing LeBron is doing. Jackson’s offense, which we all know has won championships, has a lot of moving parts. Anthony is clearly committed to helping it work.

Carmelo Anthony is also skinny

Carmelo-Anthony

LeBron James isn’t the only NBA superstar who has gotten noticeably skinnier since the season ended. Carmelo Anthony, whose season ended a lot sooner than LeBron’s, also appears to have shed some extra weight.

Anthony posted a photo on Instagram Monday that shows him looking pretty slim. It’s probably not a coincidence that he is roughly the same age as LeBron, as ‘Melo is seven months older than James and turned 30 in May.

Like LeBron, Carmelo is likely trying to prolong his career by getting into better shape. It also wouldn’t hurt for him to get a bit quicker so he can get open for all of those shots he likes to take. Who’s up next?

Derrick Rose ‘disappointed’ Carmelo Anthony chose Knicks

Derrick RoseDerrick Rose does not like putting himself out there and recruiting players to the Chicago Bulls, but that does not mean he does not want superstars joining him on the team.

Rose was hoping the Bulls would be able to sign Carmelo Anthony in free agency and admitted he was disappointed they didn’t.

“I mean, who wouldn’t be disappointed?’’ Rose said Monday via the Chicago Sun-Times. “Of course. But at the same time, you can’t be mad at the decision he made. If you put yourself in that decision, that’s a hard decision. You got your family to think about. You got money to think about. Not to say you should think about money. But when you’re talking about millions and millions of dollars, you can’t just put that behind you. So I’m not mad with the decision that he made and I wish him nothing but the best.’’

‘Melo chose to re-sign with the Knicks and got an extra year and about $40 million guaranteed compared to the offer he had from the Bulls. He recently admitted that his decision came down to returning to New York or going to Chicago.

The response from Rose is notable because his attitude makes it seem like he doesn’t care about free agents even though he does. It’s just not in his personality to be a recruiter.

At least the Bulls weren’t totally left out in free agency; they signed Pau Gasol, but they did release Carlos Boozer. Their success next season, as usual, depends on Rose’s health.

Carmelo Anthony explains why he chose to re-sign with Knicks

Carmelo Anthony glazed donut face

Carmelo Anthony had no shortage of suitors in free agency, but the high-scoring forward decided to re-sign with the New York Knicks. Anthony says that is because he believes the Knicks are close to competing for a title and far from the rebuilding mode many believe they’re in.

“I want to win. I don’t care about the money,” Anthony told ESPN.com. “I believe Phil (Jackson) will do what he has to do to take care of that.

“I don’t think we’re that far away,” he added. “People use ‘rebuilding’ too loosely.”

While the Knicks were an embarrassing 37-45 last season, they were competitive the previous season and went 54-28 while reaching the conference semis. Maybe ‘Melo figures that having a new coach, new system and some new players will help them become winners again.

Anthony also said his free agency decision was hard to make and that he was strongly considering the Bulls.

“I was flip-flopping,” he admitted. “It was hard. It was Chicago, but then after I met with L.A., it was L.A. But it came back to Chicago — and was pretty much always Chicago or New York. That’s a situation where I could have walked in now to an opportunity to compete for the next however many years.”

Based on Anthony’s comments, that report saying the Lakers were in the mix for him was accurate.

The Knicks will have somewhat of a different roster after trading Ray Felton and Tyson Chandler to the Mavericks for Jose Calderon, Sam Dalembert, Shane Larkin and Wayne Ellington. They also drafted Cleanthony Early. The changes led ‘Melo to say it feels like the Knicks have a new team.

Carmelo Anthony took small pay cut to help Knicks

Carmelo Anthony KnicksEven though Carmelo Anthony was completely deserving of a max contract from the New York Knicks, team president Phil Jackson tried to guilt his star player into taking a less money.

Phil was trying to challenge ‘Melo and make him feel greedy for taking max money instead of taking less in order to help the team. When faced with the threat of losing Anthony, though, Jackson changed his tune and told the forward the team would be offering him max money.

Luckily for the Knicks, Anthony didn’t take all that he could; he took a small pay cut to give the Knicks more flexibility in 2015. Instead of the maximum $129 million over five seasons, the NY Post’s Marc Berman says ‘Melo will be paid between $122 and $123 million.

Here are the details of the discount ‘Melo gave the Knicks via the NY Post:

Jackson confirmed The Post’s reports Anthony structured the deal to give the Knicks more cap space in 2015. It is believed he didn’t take his annual 7.5 percent raise in Year 2 and may have taken a tiny pay decrease. Under collective bargaining agreement rules, a player can receive as high as a 7.5 percent pay raise annually.

“He did exactly what we kind of asked him to do,’’ Jackson said. “Give us a break in the early part of the contract when we have some wiggle room — hopefully big enough wiggle room — next year when we can exploit it.”

Anthony’s sacrifice in Year 2 likely opens up about $2 million more in cap space for 2015, but the rest of his annual wages suffer by not taking the raise.

Taking a $6 million discount probably doesn’t sound like much when you’re due to earn $122-123 million, but it’s still significant. That amount could be the difference between signing a player and not.

‘Melo isn’t exactly sacrificing money to play for a winner — he would have signed elsewhere if that were his priority — but it still should be recognized that he took less than what he could have and deserved.

Report: Carmelo Anthony finally settles on Knicks

Carmelo Anthony KnicksEarlier this week, the NY Daily News quoted a source who said Carmelo Anthony had decided to re-sign with the New York Knicks and would inform the team of his decision on Thursday. Half of that report was accurate. Don’t worry, Knicks fans — it was the important half.

According to various NBA writers on Twitter, Anthony was in the final stages of negotiating a five-year deal with the Knicks on Saturday and told the Chicago Bulls and Houston Rockets — the two other teams that were courting him — to move on. The deal is believed to be a maximum contract of $129 million.

Phil Jackson claims he made five different contract offers to Carmelo, so he seemed confident the two sides would be able to work something out. Anthony supposedly believes in Jackson and is on board with the plan he has for the future of the Knicks.

There was some speculation that Carmelo was waiting for LeBron James to make a decision to see if it would be possible for the two to play together, and there is probably some truth to that. But like the rest of us, I’m sure Anthony knew it was unrealistic. His wife La La loves New York and probably didn’t want to move, which made the decision even easier.