Carmelo Anthony has done nothing but insist he intends to remain with the New York Knicks if and when he opts out of his current contract at the end of the season. In fact, he even said he would take a pay cut on his new deal to help the team sign top talent in free agency. That isn’t enough to stop Joakim Noah from trying.
According to ESPN’s Chris Broussard, a source said Noah was recruiting Anthony to the Chicago Bulls during All-Star weekend in New Orleans.
“I’m told that Joakim said to Melo, ‘Look, you can go to Los Angeles. But if you want to win a ring, if you want your legacy to be about winning, come to Chicago,’” Broussard reported. “Melo, I’m told, said, ‘Look, I’ve been watching you guys. I admire how hard you play. I admire how hungry you are. Oh, and by the way, my son’s favorite player – Derrick Rose.’
“It seems like it intrigued him.”
Broussard noted that Chicago would have to amnesty Carlos Boozer to offer ‘Melo a deal starting at $15 million per year, which is much less than the $22.4 million he is eligible to earn with a max contract. If they trade Mike Dunleavy and his $3 million salary they could offer Anthony around $18 million.
Does Anthony love New York so much that he is willing to take a pay cut to remain there, or was his point that he is willing to take less money anywhere to improve his chances of winning a championship? Assuming Rose comes back healthy, the Bulls look much closer to a championship team than the Knicks do. They certainly have the coaching advantage with Tom Thibodeau.
From an endorsement standpoint, Carmelo could earn just as much in Chicago as New York. The Knicks are 22-40 and are likely going to miss the playoffs. The Bulls remain fourth in the Eastern Conference despite not having their best player. I think we all know what Jim Boeheim would tell Anthony to do.