Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Knicks Morning News (2014.07.06)

  • [New York Daily News] Lupica: Carmelo Anthony has got all the moves (Sun, 06 Jul 2014 05:16:00 GMT)
    From the time Phil Jackson took the job as president and chief operating savior of the New York Knicks, getting the first max contract in the history of NBA front offices, we haven’t just treated him like the most powerful guy at the Garden, we’ve treated him like the most powerful guy in New York sports.

  • [New York Daily News] Lakers become serious threat to sign Carmelo Anthony (Sun, 06 Jul 2014 02:26:28 GMT)
    Phil Jackson is now battling his former club and his current girlfriend over Carmelo Anthony. There were multiple reports Saturday night that the Los Angeles Lakers – with Jackson’s fiancé Jeanie Buss as team president – believe they have emerged as a serious threat to sign the Knicks’ free-agent forward.

  • 127 comments on “Knicks Morning News (2014.07.06)

    1. Frank O.

      Let us not forget that Stat was one of our very best players in the final 16-6 run last season.
      I just wanted to say that.
      He may not have the durability, but when he plays well, it makes me very happy.

    2. Frank O.

      Once again, the reporting is such shit.
      Simmons says LA is a major player and then throws in that it’s a legit three-way race between the Knicks, Bulls and LA.
      Knicks offered full five year max.
      LA can offer 4/96
      and the Bulls 4/70+
      So he’d seriously take an almost $50 million pay cut to play for the Bulls, where their superstar (Rose) doesn’t appear to even want him there?

      There are just so many people in basketball willing to lie to reporters for the purposes of manipulating teams.
      ruru always insisted that Melo would take less to win, meaning he would be willing to help the Knicks get better. But even ruru got kind of sick of some of Melo’s play and behavior, I seem to recall.

      I think the smartest thing I have seen was a tweet by Jalen Rose that said something like, wake me when Melo or Lebron signs with a different team.

      zzzzz

    3. ephus

      I have expect that Chicago is in the mix and that Carmelo has told them he would consider going there if they can get him 4/96. Chicago certainly can do that, if the Knicks would participate in a S&T including Boozer. Knicks have apparently told Chicago that there is no way they do a S&T.

    4. The Prescient Cock Jowles

      If what I understand about Achille’s tendon ruptures is correct — that they are among the worst injuries an athlete can have — there’s no way that Old Pau, Injured Kobe, Untested Randle and Overpaid Melo would be a better team than anything the Knicks have to offer.

      And this is coming from a guy who thinks the Knicks might again be in the 41-41 range next year. Or worse, depending on what happens next.

    5. Brian Cronin

      I have expect that Chicago is in the mix and that Carmelo has told them he would consider going there if they can get him 4/96. Chicago certainly can do that, if the Knicks would participate in a S&T including Boozer. Knicks have apparently told Chicago that there is no way they do a S&T.

      So you think it could be something like “I’ll go to the Lakers and you’ll get nothing or you can trade me to Chicago and then you’ll at least get something”? That’s certainly a possibility. I think the most likely scenario is that this is all bogus fake drama, but I will concede that that scenario is also at least a reasonable one.

    6. ephus

      Yes, Brian. I think that is possible. It’s also possible that Melo is trying to shape his contract to take the “discount” in year 5, which would save the Knicks 3.4 million, but do nothing to help cap space in the next two years.

    7. Frank

      This whole thing reeks of a transparent leverage play by someone. Not sure who or fr what purpose.

      I have yet to read anyone who can present a reasonable argument as to how going to the lakers is an advantage to Melo other than that it’s in LA (which honestly is enough if that’s where he and LaLa want to live). He will make less money, they don’t have a coach, they don’t have a roster per se, and for two years they are buried under Kobe’s contract, so they have less near term contention prospects than the Knicks do.

      The only things I can think of are that he wants to live in LA or that there’s a side deal going on with LaLa that will significantly improve the overall compensation to the Anthony family.

    8. ephus

      Let me reply as devil’s advocate.

      If Carmelo takes 4/96 from LA, he will only get 3.6 million less over the first four years than his max deal from the Knicks. The big difference is the fifth year at 29 million. Maybe Carmelo believes he can earn big money in his next contract.

      On the lack of a coach, Carmelo may have been promised input on selection. Same on roster construction.

      It’s hard to see how the Lakers are competitive with Melo/Kobe, but never underestimate the power of self-delusion.

      We will see what happens.

    9. yellowboy90

      I find it funny how Phil doesn’t want to help the Bulls/Paxon out. Then again he didn’t leave Chicago on good terms. On top of that you have the Phil/Jeannie/Lakers connection.

      Anyway, back to Amar’e. There can only be 3 possibilities that could take him, right? Orlando, Philly, and Milwaukee seem like the only teams that would take him but I don’t know what the Knicks have that could sweeten the deal.

      Is it weird that this Amar’e report comes out now. Is Melo trying to pressure Phil to get it done now regardless of cost? Maybe I just need sleep. lol.

    10. hoolahoop

      Let us not forget that Stat was one of our very best players in the final 16-6 run last season.

      Sheeple here underestimate Amare.

    11. hoolahoop

      Why in the world would the knicks offer a max deal to Melo? Oh yeah, they’re the knicks.

    12. johnno

      @4 — I asked my friend, who is an orthopedic surgeon, about this yesterday. His opinion — an elite athlete who ruptures his achilles can NEVER completely regain his explosiveness. Elton Brand was never the same after he ruptured his. Maybe Kobe will defy the odds but, if I were Melo, I wouldn’t bet my next few years on it, any more than I would bet my next few years on Derek Hardaway McGrady Arenas Rose’s knees.

    13. ephus

      There are a LOT of bad contracts out there that teams would love to trade for Amar’e’s expiring deal. Milwaukee has three: Sanders, Ilyasova and Mayo. New Orleans has two: Gordon and Evans. Sacramento has four: Williams, Thompson, Landry & Terry. Detroit has two: Josh Smith and Brandon Jennings.

    14. Z-man

      So Brian, explain to me again how it was a no-brainer to match Lin’s contract offer from Houston. As it looks right now, Houston can’t dump Lin unless they include a first rounder, and that’s at $8 million for the one remaining year on Lin’s deal. And this is after all the positives about Lin sort of came true (he was relatively durable, shot relatively well, etc.)

      The fact that we used the Lin cap space on Bargnani is irrelevant, we didn’t have to make that terrible deal. The Felton deal should also be judged separately from the issue of whether or not to sign Lin, as we could have gone the D-League/Vet’s Minimum route rather that trade assets for Felton. In retrospect, why would having Lin on a near-max salary this year have been even a “good” idea, much less a no-brainer, other than as a way of preventing other dumb deals?

      And in a strange way, the combined Lin-Bargnani-Felton fiascos have resulted in a sort of “tanking” that led to the desperation signing/empowering of Phil Jackson. In the best case scenario, Lin improves us just enough to eke into the playoffs, possibly improving the odds of retaining the status quo (Woodson, Mills, et.al.) In the worst case, he alienates Melo, or gets injured, or plays poorly and gets chewed up by NY fans/media for being an overpaid flash in the pan.

    15. Z-man

      If Melo goes to LA and LeBron doesn’t, I would be happy to see him go because it would confirm that he has a low IQ (not just basketball IQ.)

      In fact, I am feeling more and more like I’d like us to do that sign and trade with Bulls, even if it means taking on Boozer.

      I hope Jax back off on the max deal, just to tweak Melo’s agent. Call his bluff, Phil!

    16. sugarslim5

      I knew it, Melos going to the Lakers after all. Should have seen it coming, big city, lights, La La and a home out there. Kobe’s his friend, so it just makes sense for him to skip town and move on. If he’s coming back to ny what’s the wait.

    17. Farfa

      Hey, JD has got dem moves like Jagger.

      Also: I find it cool that the video says “live” and every shot is done purposefully to avoid any occasion to set the camera on the “crowd” attending to the show. Like there’s absolutely no one listening to Jimmy.

    18. massive

      Wishing for somebody to make a bad choice for the sole purpose of painting him as an idiot is the malicious, ego-driven kind of thing people in the media do. Can’t believe I just read that in a comment here. Melo is going to re sign with the Knicks, and I’m hoping he takes a paycut because James Dolan isn’t Mickey Arison, so the chances of his getting screwed by a miserly owner aren’t likely here. But we’ll see how this shakes out.

    19. The Prescient Cock Jowles

      There are two female singers on the track and only one on the stage. Plus there are some continuity errors and that lead vocal is obviously not live.

      Plus, it’s terrible.

    20. thenoblefacehumper

      And this is coming from a guy who thinks the Knicks might again be in the 41-41 range next year. Or worse, depending on what happens next.

      Going by WP alone, isn’t 45 wins or so very much in play? With Calderon’s 7.5 replacing Felton’s 3 and hopefully Aldrich (or anyone else) taking Bargs’ minutes wouldn’t it be hard to project them to be equally as bad as last year?

    21. massive

      Say what you want about the guy, Jowles knows how many games the Knicks will win. Three seasons in a row. 36-30, 54-28, 37-45.

    22. lavor postell

      I don’t actually think Jowles predicted 54 wins. If I remember correctly he had us pegged at 49 wins.

    23. Kahnzy

      I think the best thing that can happen to the Knicks is for Guitar Jimmy to become a blues sensation. We need to encourage him in this pursuit, not discourage.

      The more time Dolan spends pretending to be a blues star, the less time he has to meddle with the Knicks.

    24. Kikuchiyo

      Actually, the song’s pretty good.

      Oh, never mind. I can’t lie no better than that. I’d better tell the truth….

    25. The Prescient Cock Jowles

      Going by WP alone, isn’t 45 wins or so very much in play? With Calderon’s 7.5 replacing Felton’s 3 and hopefully Aldrich (or anyone else) taking Bargs’ minutes wouldn’t it be hard to project them to be equally as bad as last year?

      If Aldrich plays 2000 minutes the Knicks will be a playoff team. Fact.

      But seriously, I had 41 wins last season. The WP guys had 37 on the nose, mostly because they thought Chandler would be more productive and Bargnani would play more minutes.

    26. 2FOR18

      A friend of mine is a big Bulls fan and wants melo, so I “offered” him melo and JR for Boozer, McDermott, Butler and Taj Gibson, and he wants no part of that.
      It sounds like something Dolan would jump at if he owned the Bulls.

    27. Kikuchiyo

      But even a broken clock is right twice a day!!!!!!!!!

      Clocks? So analog. Clocks are about as useful as PPG. Such a flattened, non-specific marker of time.

    28. JK47

      That JD and the Straight Shot track is obviously not live, they’re obviously miming to the recorded version. The record was probably tracked at some ridiculous baller-ass studio like Columbia Studios on 30th Street or the Record Plant or Avatar or something. JD’s vocal was probably sung through a vintage $30,000 tube microphone, and probably another $50,000 worth of pre-amps, compressors and equalizers. There was certainly a team of first-rate engineers running the session, and a high-paid producer whose job it was to coax the best possible performance out of Dolan. I’m sure he had infinite amounts of studio time and probably did dozens if not hundreds of takes, and some Pro Tools engineer probably sifted through each of those takes and took the very best lines from each take. The master take was probably then edited and auto-tuned, and then the record was probably mixed on a half-million dollar recording console.

      Yet they still came up with that unbelievably shitty result.

    29. lavor postell

      Isn’t that what Jackson’s been preaching this whole time? We’ll give you the max, but you know it’ll be a lot easier to field a championship team if you take a bit of a discount. I feel like Phil’s been consistent with that message since his arrival.

    30. ephus

      If you believe the story recounted by Chris Herring, Carmelo Anthony’s interest in the Lakers is a response to BCT’s offer of the Max combined with his entreaty that he voluntarily take less. Carmelo, according to the story, was puzzled by Jackson’s pitch and wondered whether Jackson had truly offered the Max.

      Color me skeptical. I trust that Herring has good sources in Camp Carmelo who have spoken these words to him. I just do not trust CAA to be speaking candidly. It simply could not have been news to Carmelo that Jackson would both offer the Max and ask him to take less.

      To me, this smacks of trying to get Chicago to up their S&T offer.

    31. JK47

      Carmelo, according to the story, was puzzled by Jackson’s pitch and wondered whether Jackson had truly offered the Max.

      Geez, is the guy like four years old or something? It’s really not a hard concept to understand.

      To me, this smacks of trying to get Chicago to up their S&T offer.

      As usual, ephus, you make a lot of sense. If Chicago was able to offer 4/$96 Melo would probably jump at that. Maybe there is hope after all for a best-case scenario, which is a S&T/asset plunder from Chicago.

    32. er

      “While Anthony and his camp were told that he could have a maximum contract if he wanted it, a source said, team president Phil Jackson continued to preach the virtues of taking less than the maximum—a message that left Anthony questioning whether the max offer was sincere

      I mean isnt that kind of the definition of being insincere? Like heres a piece of cheese johnny, but really i dont want you to have it. Fucking odd.

      @38 i mean its a strange concept no? Why even offer the max deal? Offer something else and negotiate.

    33. lavor postell

      @er

      Because he’s saying if the max is what you want we are willing to give it to you, but ideally we’d like you to take a little less which we can negotiate with you on once you give us a dollar amount you’re willing to give up. I’m sure they even presented him theoretical “discount” contracts.

    34. thenoblefacehumper

      I mean isnt that kind of the definition of being insincere? Like heres a piece of cheese johnny, but really i dont want you to have it. Fucking odd.

      There’s nothing insincere about it. He can have the max if he wants it. If he takes it, Phil is a lot less likely to be able to build a contender. If anything it’s actually a very honest, and yes, sincere way of presenting the situation.

    35. JK47

      You know, honestly I think Phil Jackson’s whole Zen Jedi Master shtick is just that– a shtick. But that doesn’t mean he is not a clever bastard. I think this is quite artful the way he is handling this.

      I think he’s a pretty good judge of character and motivations. He has probably sussed out that Carmelo Anthony is a heavily ego-driven individual, out for himself in every way. This doesn’t make Carmelo an evil person or even a bad guy, but it’s not hard to figure out he has a massive sense of entitlement. And hey, even his biggest detractors would have to admit he’s at least one of the 50 best basketball players on Planet Earth. He has reason to have the big ego.

      But that doesn’t mean he’s the kind of guy you build around. This is like a test for Melo: are you willing to become a different kind of person? Are you for real when you say “It’s not about the money, I just want to win,” or is all that just talk? If it is just talk– which it appears to be– then maybe you should go play somewhere else.

      So in a way, it’s like he’s not really offering the max contract. He’s offering a chance for Melo to be a true leader. And it looks like Melo is maybe going to pass on that opportunity.

    36. ephus

      BTW, there is a narrow window for the Knicks to S&T Carmelo to the Lakers for Nash, Pau Gasol (double S&T) and the 2017 first round pick. Knicks would have to stay below the Apron, so Pau’s max salary would be around 8 million. Contract would have to be at least three years, but only the first year need be guaranteed. If this happened, Knicks would be hard capped.

      Why would the Lakers do a S&T? They get to ditch all 9.7 million of Nash’s salary. They could try to bring in LBJ or Bosh.

      Why would the Knicks do it? They get a first round pick. Nash might also retire rather than move to NY because of his child custody situation.

      Why would Carmelo do it? He gets the Lakers with a Max salary and a clean cap. Of course, Pau would no longer be there.

      I have no idea what will happen.

    37. max fisher-cohen

      Even without Nash’s salary though the Lakers are still short of being able to offer two 10 year vet max contracts. Lebron and Melo would have to split about $32m I believe ($23.5 for kobe, $2.5 for Randle, 10 empty roster slot holds). I would expect that Randle would be the cookie LA would dangle rather than the future pick since losing him would open up $2m more.

    38. The Prescient Cock Jowles

      vintage $30,000 tube microphone

      [walks past rack of original U47, U87, Solution D, C12 mics]

      JD: You have a very nice selection here.

      Engineer: Thanks. We try to keep things diverse and high-end. Of course, we keep all kinds of stuff around here.

      [stops in front of Nady SDM-800]

      JD: I like this one. It looks loud. Loud is good. Very loud is good. It looks very loud.

      Engineer: Loud? I don’t, uh… well, actually, that’s from my kid’s–

      JD: Shut the fuck up for a second. I’d like to buy this microphone.

      Engineer: We, uh, we don’t do that here–

      JD: My dad founded Cablevision. Have you heard of it? I want to buy this microphone. I will give you $10,000 dollars for this microphone.

      Engineer: It’s worth about–

      JD: It’s worth $10,000. I like it. I will pay you $10,000 for it.

      Engineer: Okay.

      JD: Thank you, Mr. Masai.

      Engineer: You’re welcome.

      scene

    39. JK47

      I highly doubt that LeBron is going to the Lakers to play with Melo, Kobe, Julius Randle and ten minimum salary scrubs. He just got it shoved right in his face that the “three stars and dreck” model is not going to bring him championships.

    40. ephus

      There would only need be 8 cap holds. That would be roughly 4 million. Should leave 33.2 million to split between Carmelo and ???

    41. er

      So in a way, it’s like he’s not really offering the max contract. He’s offering a chance for Melo to be a true leader. And it looks like Melo is maybe going to pass on that opportunity.

      See this is my point, hes really not offering the max while offering it. Thats not sincere.

      Sincere: having or showing true feelings that are expressed in an honest way

      Like i said, Phil is playing mind games. Just make an offer below the max if thats what you want to do. Putting it ALL on the player is kinda flaking on your GM duties no? Couldnt he just do that with all the players, be Phil “Priceline” Jackson pick your own price.

    42. ephus

      Phil’s offer is sincere. He wants Carmelo to take less than the Max. He thinks the roster will be better next year if he takes a discount. If put to the test, Jackson would rather have Melo at the Max than let him walk. Phil is telling Carmelo that he will only have himself to blame if he takes the Max and is later disappointed by the quality of his teammates.

      Pure honesty AND incredibly manipulative.

    43. lavor postell

      @er

      And if this story is true Melo’s the most insincere since he was talking about how money isn’t important to him and that he’d be willing to take a discount back in February. Maybe this is a bullshit story and he’s going to come back on a reasonable discount, but if he just takes the max we’ll know what his priorities were in his decision. I won’t begrudge him making the max he can make, but I never want to hear again about how winning is his priority and how it’s all he cares about.

    44. er

      Phil is telling Carmelo that he will only have himself to blame if he takes the Max and is later disappointed by the quality of his teammates.Pure honesty AND incredibly manipulative.

      I guess. I suppose this is why Phil is the Zen master. Its just dangerous to dangle money in front of a player who has a short window to maximize money.

    45. JK47

      And if this story is true Melo’s the most insincere since he was talking about how money isn’t important to him and that he’d be willing to take a discount back in February.

      I was just about to post the same kind of thought. Melo does like to talk out of both sides of his mouth. You can’t say “I don’t care about money, I just want to win” and then demand a max contract. That’s the kind of bullshit that Melo does that a lot of people find really irritating. Jax is calling him out on that publicly.

      I think Melo’s motivations are very simple, and that Phil Jackson has read Melo exactly correctly. The not-so-subtle message Jackson is sending is this: either change, be a leader and make some sacrifices, or get the eff out of here. The only gamble is that Melo says “fuck it” and just signs the megamax anyway, but I think Phil has probably successfully shamed him out of doing that.

    46. er

      And if this story is true Melo’s the most insincere since he was talking about how money isn’t important to him and that he’d be willing to take a discount back in February. Maybe this is a bullshit story and he’s going to come back on a reasonable discount, but if he just takes the max we’ll know what his priorities were in his decision. I won’t begrudge him making the max he can make

      See this is not a fair assessment to me. If someone tells you that, hey ill take less if you need me to, then you still offer them the max. What does that mean? Thats conflicting as fuck.

      I dont get how no one else sees this.

      but I never want to hear again about how winning is his priority and how it’s all he cares about.

      Come on. Who doesn’t care about money? If money was no object how come all the players dont play for the minimum to Max the chances of teaming up. Athletes are held to a strange standard, no one in the reg job would turn down money. But do to the cap these guys need to take less and they only have a 10-15 year window. Tough to say ALL that matters is winning. I wonder if Jordan wanted to win less because he was making 35 mil in 1998

      — “I don’t care about money, I just want to win”

      is this a quote?

    47. er

      The not-so-subtle message Jackson is sending is this: either change, be a leader and make some sacrifices, or get the eff out of here

      Sure. Normal people also do this by OFFERING less.

      If i was Melo id take all of it. Fuck that, I cant be shamed out of money. lol If you are giving i will take :)

    48. Brian Cronin

      I guess. I suppose this is why Phil is the Zen master. Its just dangerous to dangle money in front of a player who has a short window to maximize money.

      I agree. Just tell the guy that we think it is best for you to sign for less. Don’t ever actually offer him the max contract, because you’re committing yourself to something you clearly don’t want to do. And apparently it has confused Melo.

    49. DRed

      I suppose Phil could be trying to manipulate Melo into leaving because he doesn’t want him back, while still appearing to have made him a max offer for PR purposes. At least that’s what I’d like to believe.

    50. er

      @58 exactly. It aint that hard. Just offer something and negotiate. Its his Job. What is he getting paid 12 million for?

    51. lavor postell

      Come on. Who doesn’t care about money? If money was no object how come all the players dont play for the minimum to Max the chances of teaming up. Athletes are held to a strange standard, no one in the reg job would turn down money. But do to the cap these guys need to take less and they only have a 10-15 year window. Tough to say ALL that matters is winning. I wonder if Jordan wanted to win less because he was making 35 mil in 1998

      Is $110m a lot of money? It’s not like the Knicks are sitting here and asking him to take the vet. min. They aren’t even telling him to go under $20m AAV. Phil is telling him we think you’re worth the max, but if you take less it’s going to make it a lot easier to put pieces around you.

      “Without a doubt,’’ Anthony said when asked if he’d take less than the max contract to remain a Knick. “Any opportunity I have to build that up in New York, I’d do it. I told people all the time, if it takes me taking a paycut, I’ll be the first one on Mr. Dolan’s steps saying: ‘Take my money and let’s build something strong over here.’ ”

      “As far as the money, it doesn’t really matter to me,’’ Anthony said. “If I go somewhere else, I get paid. If I stay in New York, I get paid. As far as the money goes, it’s not my concern. My concern is to be able to compete on a high level, a championship level, coming in this last stretch of my career. I want to compete at that level.”

      http://nypost.com/2014/02/14/carmelo-ill-re-sign-on-cheap-if-i-like-knicks-plan/

    52. Brian Cronin

      Here are the Melo quotes of interest.

      When asked if he would take less than the max from the Knicks back in February, Melo said:

      Without a doubt. Any opportunity I have to build that up in New York, I’d do it. I told people all the time, if it takes me taking a paycut, I’ll be the first one on Mr. Dolan’s steps saying: ‘Take my money and let’s build something strong over here.’

      Melo further elaborated:

      “As far as the money, it doesn’t really matter to me. If I go somewhere else, I get paid. If I stay in New York, I get paid. As far as the money goes, it’s not my concern. My concern is to be able to compete on a high level, a championship level, coming in this last stretch of my career. I want to compete at that level.”

      And when people freaked out over those comments, he then did a follow-up interview with ESPN where he said:

      “I want to win a championship, so I’m going to do whatever I have to do to win a championship. If that means testing free agency, what happens on that market, so be it.’’

      So, in other words, we can pretty much discount everything he said that day as meaningless. Which is fair enough. ruruland has explained that here plenty of times, that Melo is not a great extemporaneous speaker and he often says things he doesn’t mean to say.

      EDITED TO ADD: I see LP posted them before me.

    53. er

      They aren’t even telling him to go under $20m AAV. Phil is telling him we think you’re worth the max, but if you take less it’s going to make it a lot easier to put pieces around you.

      Again, who cares what you “think someone is worth” this is a business. You offer what YOU as a company want to offer them. If i go to an interview and they offer me 250K in writing but tell me hey please take 200K to help us update some things in the office to create a better environment. Id laugh my way to the bank.

      As far as the money, it doesn’t really matter to me,’’ Anthony said. “If I go somewhere else, I get paid. If I stay in New York, I get paid. As far as the money goes, it’s not my concern. My concern is to be able to compete on a high level, a championship level, coming in this last stretch of my career. I want to compete at that level.”

      Thats all fine. And also why you offer less than max and negotiate. We do not know for a fact that Melo went to Phil and asked for the max. We do know that Phil has offered the max.

      If Phil thinks the only way to keep him is offer the max, this means he lied at every press conference where he said we will be fine without Melo. Right? Or the other option is like what was being stated here is that Phil is trying to shame Melo, which is BS.

    54. 2FOR18

      Just a nit pic. There’s no evidence that melo has actually been offered the max, only that a conversation has taken place. Until melo is presented with a contract to sign, he hasn’t been offered anything.
      I’m not sure what is so dishonest or disingenuous about PJ telling melo that he can get the max, but that it would be in the best interests of the team that he take less.
      And regarding taking less than the max, it is disingenuous to compare melo’s situation to that of a working stiff being asked to take less money for the sake of the company, because in the case of the Knicks, the same amount of money will be spent on player salaries regardless of how much melo makes individually; there won’t be any extra money going to Dolan if melo takes less.
      PJ has asked melo to make a choice: Does he want to make 129 mil and make it as hard as possible for the Knicks to get him help, or can he get by on 100 mil so the Knicks have a better shot of getting him better teammates.

    55. hoolahoop

      Big free agents in most sports, usually accept a discount offer from their own team. Why should the knicks offer more than LA. That’s not a championship team. And it appears that Chicago and Houston are offering much less.

    56. ephus

      When the players agreed to the CBA and salary cap, they knew there would be trade offs between individual financial success and team building. Carmelo is being given complete agency to make that choice here. He can choose to take the Max salary. He would get it from the Knicks. He might (how likely has been the subject of heated debate here) be able to lead the resulting roster to a championship over the next five years.

      He can also choose to take less than the Max to leave room for additional strengthening of the roster. I take Phil’s statements to mean that the Knicks will spend freely, not follow the Sarver/reinsdorf/Arison model.

      I see no moral superiority in any choice that Carmelo makes. He can choose to take the Max. He can choose to take less. He can even choose to go elsewhere. The one thing he cannot do is escape the ramifications that flow from his choice. If he takes the Max, he reduces the likelihood of team success. If he leaves money on the table, he is sacrificing (to some extent) his personal prosperity. Of course, team success might bring off-the-court opportunities that fill the hole. If he leaves the Knicks, he will not be remembered as a New York star athlete, but rather as an athlete who once played in New York.

      My guess, but I think it is well founded, is that Phil Jackson told Carmelo Anthony that Carmelo would find the most aggregate joy from taking less to build a better team in NY.

    57. Kahnzy

      exactly. It aint that hard. Just offer something and negotiate. Its his Job. What is he getting paid 12 million for?

      To negotiate as only the Zen Master can.

      If BCT is indeed manipulating Melo through honesty, and if he gets Melo to either take a pay cut or walk away he’ll have earned his money in my book.

      I like to believe he’s getting paid $12m/year to out think everyone else in less than conventional ways. If Melo signs for the max then he either failed is his ploy, or he’s a bust as an executive. Or Dolan really is still in charge.

    58. ephus

      Carmelo could decide to take 4/96 from the Lakers over 5/129 from the Knicks. In that case, as Phil said, the Knicks will move forward. Some here have argued that they will be better off than if Carmelo took the Knicks’ Max offer. I do not see any “lie” from BCT.

      If you have read any of Phil’s books, he continually preaches that the best way to find individual happiness is to submerge individual desire to a collective enterprise. That is the Zen Jedi stuff. I think Phil authentically believes it.

    59. Kahnzy

      Again, who cares what you “think someone is worth” this is a business. You offer what YOU as a company want to offer them. If i go to an interview and they offer me 250K in writing but tell me hey please take 200K to help us update some things in the office to create a better environment. Id laugh my way to the bank.

      You’re missing a vital point here though, er. In your scenario, that company isn’t legally bound to only being able to spend a very specific amount. In your scenario, that company has other means to increase revenue or cut costs or what have you in order to upgrade things.

      In Melo’s case, though, there is a very real limit to the amount of money the Knicks can spend. A hard-and-set pie, if you will. Melo taking a pay cut doesn’t mean the Knicks save money and Dolan gets richer, it means the Knicks can field a better team (theoretically anyway), so in a way Melo taking a pay cut helps him. You don’t think winning a championship in New York would make him even wealthier? He can make 30m less over five years, but win a title in NY and that would seem like couch change to him.

      If there were no salaray cap of any kind, then you would be 100% correct because fuck the owners. But there is a salary cap, and what Melo chooses to do will have very real ramifications that you in your private business scenario wouldn’t have.

    60. lavor postell

      Again, who cares what you “think someone is worth” this is a business. You offer what YOU as a company want to offer them. If i go to an interview and they offer me 250K in writing but tell me hey please take 200K to help us update some things in the office to create a better environment. Id laugh my way to the bank.

      This is not a comparable situation. Melo has made well into 9 figures in his career. Asking him to take a little less money so that the Knicks can potentially add another superstar to the mix while he still makes over $100m over the next 5 years is more than fair.

      Thats all fine. And also why you offer less than max and negotiate. We do not know for a fact that Melo went to Phil and asked for the max. We do know that Phil has offered the max.

      If Phil thinks the only way to keep him is offer the max, this means he lied at every press conference where he said we will be fine without Melo. Right? Or the other option is like what was being stated here is that Phil is trying to shame Melo, which is BS.

      Actually what Phil said is that it’s difficult to build around multiple max salaries and that he hoped Melo would be a man of his word. He never once stated we will not give Melo the max, but he did hope that Melo would live up to what he said and take less than the max if it would help the Knicks put talent around him.

      He’s not trying to shame Melo. He’s trying to get Melo to demonstrate he’s not full of shit. Is Melo willing to actually give up $15-20m over a 5-year period so that the Knicks have cap flex and can add real talent to support him? Or would Melo rather max out his salary and serve up platitudes about winning and that being the only goal now?

      If Melo wants all the money he can get that’s fine, but I really don’t want to hear again about his desire to win over everything else.

    61. ess-dog

      I think regardless of what Jackson offers, Melo still needs to consider his best path to a title. LA could easily be that place. Kobe/Nash/Maybe Pau still holds a lot of allure in the league. Plus a high draft pick and future picks. Plus the ability for Melo to effectively pick his coach. AND he has a house there and a wife with movie star aspirations. And a team with a legacy of winning.
      I guess what I’m saying is, I don’t think the max matters as much as winning to Melo. The carrot Jackson is dangling is “see, you can start crafting this team by giving up some salary because our FO effed up so bad in the past!” Which isn’t super attractive.

    62. ephus

      Even if Carmelo takes 5/129, I do not think Phil necessarily will have failed as an executive. If this process makes Carmelo more receptive to Phil/Fish preaching Triangle principles, that has real value. Of course, I would prefer that Carmelo take less so the Knicks can bring in better teammates.

      The worst possible outcome, in my mind, would be for Carmelo to get 5/129 and take that contract as an affirmation that he just needs to keep doing what he has been doing since he arrived in NY and wait for Phil to bring in new players who can take the Knicks over the top. If that happens, the Phil Jackson experiment will be a failure.

    63. lavor postell

      @ess-dog

      The Lakers don’t have their 2015 or their 2017 picks and will be paying Kobe Bryant fresh off of an injury to his Achiless $25m during the 2015-16 season. The Lakers are without question in a worse situation than the Knicks even with Julius Randle in tow.

    64. BigBlueAL

      Im getting a headache will all these rumors and psycho-analysis of what Melo should and will do and what that all means to his reputation in the end. Just make a decision already dammit lol.

    65. ess-dog

      Yeah but I think most players would rather team up with Kobe after a shark attack than Bargnani, Shumpert, and ?

    66. lavor postell

      I’d rather team up with a team with a ton of cap space next year and Phil Jackson in charge than tying my horse to Kobe, Randle and Sacre for the next 2 years in the West. I mean the Lakers don’t even have a coach yet.

    67. er

      er. In your scenario, that company isn’t legally bound to only being able to spend a very specific amount. In your scenario, that company has other means to increase revenue or cut costs or what have you in order to upgrade things.

      Yea i realized that as i wrote it. Thats what makes it dumber what Phil did. If its true.

    68. JK47

      Melo probably thinks that Laker team with him and post-Achilles Kobe is gonna be awesome– two alpha dog great heroball players on one team? How could that team lose? You don’t even need other players with two guys who are that awesome, just find 10 dudes from the D-League and RINGZ BABY.

    69. er

      Asking him to take a little less money so that the Knicks can potentially add another superstar to the mix while he still makes over $100m over the next 5 years is more than fair.

      See i agree with this. Problem is if Phil offered the max, he is sending mixed signals.

    70. JK47

      Yeah, but you gotta at least offer Melo the max or he’s gonna get all butthurt and tell you to go eff yourself. You have to like trick him into taking less. If Jax says, “Okay, 5/100, that’s the offer” Melo would have probably immediately cut off all contact with the Knicks.

    71. Robtachi

      You know, it’s not actually the Achilles. That’s healed. He’s coming off the knee injury that was probably caused by aftereffects of the Achilles injury.

      Not that it’s any better, but let’s at least get this right.

    72. er

      Yeah, but you gotta at least offer Melo the max or he’s gonna get all butthurt and tell you to go eff yourself.

      —Umm ok. This doesn’t even make sense. So you have attributed Melo with an ego so big that he has to be offered something to turn it down? So he’s not butthurt? K I’m officially with Jalen. wake me when Melo switches teams

    73. ess-dog

      That’s why I think a clean break is best for everyone. Melo probably feels burned by the last administration, and Phil has to move forward with his plan. Question is, what’s the move if Melo sight elsewhere without a sign and trade, not wanting to gut his next team? What’s our next move?

    74. lavor postell

      Well I think we’d still have our full MLE and biannual exception to use in that case. I’d try to use to Bargs and STAT’s deal to take on long-term salary if we can get draft selections out of it.

    75. Brian Cronin

      In that scenario, the move is probably to tank in 2014-15 to get as high of a pick as possible. And then reload next season with free agents and a high draft pick.

    76. Will the Thrill

      Now that Phil has apparently offered the max, I really hope Melo just leaves. I don’t want to depend on Melo taking less money on his own will. I kind of like what Phil is doing and think it has a chance to get Melo to take less, but I’ll believe it when I see it.

    77. Kahnzy

      In that scenario, the move is probably to tank in 2014-15 to get as high of a pick as possible. And then reload next season with free agents and a high draft pick.

      I wonder what we can get Dallas to give us to take back Felton.

    78. Jack Bauer

      Phil is playing his Jedi mind control tricks on Melo. “I offer you the max, but I don’t really offer it or expect you to accept it…..” The question is, can Melo’s ego handle signing on for some kind of discount so the team has room to upgrade the roster? If he does, it’s a win/win, if he insists on 5/129, then he wins financially, but not on the hardwood in all likelihood. If he goes to LA Melo loses on both fronts, less money & worse team with no coach. I don’t see that happening unless Lebron signs on too (despite what Simmons says). And I don’t see Lebron going to LA to play with Kobe, Randle, Nash and a bunch of guys you could get on 10 day contracts.

    79. BigBlueAL

      Kobe and Melo worked out today at UCLA!! Thats gotta be a sign according to Twitter lol.

    80. ephus

      I part company with those who say Phil Jackson has not really offered the 5/129 Max to Carmelo. He has publicly done so. If he tried to back track from that offer, he would destroy his reputation. BCT’s relentless protection of his reputation as a truth teller led him to leave Chicago and LA (the first time). It also would strip him of his greatest asset in negotiating with players and agents.

      He is trying to persuade Carmelo that the underlying structure of the CBA creates a dynamic where it is in Carmelo’s interest to take less.

    81. BigBlueAL

      I think the issue now is the other teams obviously stroked the crap out of Melo’s ego during their visits. Safe to say Phil did not lol.

    82. Brian Cronin

      I part company with those who say Phil Jackson has not really offered the 5/129 Max to Carmelo. He has publicly done so. If he tried to back track from that offer, he would destroy his reputation. BCT’s relentless protection of his reputation as a truth teller led him to leave Chicago and LA (the first time). It also would strip him of his greatest asset in negotiating with players and agents.

      He is trying to persuade Carmelo that the underlying structure of the CBA creates a dynamic where it is in Carmelo’s interest to take less.

      Oh yeah, I didn’t know we were seriously debating whether Jackson actually offered Melo the max. It is clear that he did.

    83. Brian Cronin

      By the by, though, if Melo ends up taking the mega max here, that’s a big-time failure by Jackson.

    84. JK47

      By the by, though, if Melo ends up taking the mega max here, that’s a big-time failure by Jackson.

      If Melo takes the max, Jackson should insist that there not be a no-trade clause. Then he should turn around and trade Melo after a year.

    85. Jack Bauer

      He offered Melo the max, but is trying to convince him to take less at the same time. That was my point so there is nothing to part ways about what I said.

    86. Unreason

      I am naive but PJ’s message seems straight forward- “You are worth the max, but to build a contender you’ll need to sacrifice a bit the way the Heart and Spurs stars have”. I assume most players who think they are worth the max, not just Anthony, will be disappointed if a lesser statement worth is made in the marketplace. He’s just costing not to insult Anthony, I think, before
      him to do something hard that’s in their mutual interest. Not much Jedi our confusing or disingenuous about that.

    87. ess-dog

      lol at the people that say the Knicks are a better team than the Lakers. Our best player right now after Melo is Jose Calderon. Plus Kobe/Pau have rings. I’m sure that means something in Melo’s mind.
      I’m not saying that the Lakers are even the best choice available to him, I can just see why Melo is considering it.

    88. hoolahoop

      If Melo signs for 5/129, it’s starting to look like the same old knicks. . . and another five years of suffering. Complete lunacy. Just like the first time around. Toooooo much.

    89. JK47

      lol at the people that say the Knicks are a better team than the Lakers. Our best player right now after Melo is Jose Calderon. Plus Kobe/Pau have rings. I’m sure that means something in Melo’s mind.

      I’ll say it again: the Lakers are the far worse situation, because on the Lakers you’re looking at two years of getting your ass kicked instead of one. Is Kobe really any different than Amar’e Stoudemire? Kobe doesn’t play defense for shit anymore, has major injury questions just like Amar’e, and is not as efficient on offense. If I had to choose Amar’e’s contract for one year or Kobe’s for two, it’s not even remotely close.

    90. The Prescient Cock Jowles

      Diaw for 3 years, $22M? That seems totally excessive. But hey, if there’s a GM I trust, it’s Buford.

    91. lavor postell

      I’ll say it again: the Lakers are the far worse situation, because on the Lakers you’re looking at two years of getting your ass kicked instead of one. Is Kobe really any different than Amar’e Stoudemire? Kobe doesn’t play defense for shit anymore, has major injury questions just like Amar’e, and is not as efficient on offense. If I had to choose Amar’e’s contract for one year or Kobe’s for two, it’s not even remotely close.

      Yeah and to build on this they don’t have their 2015 or 2017 first round picks and as of right now their roster is Kobe, Randle, Nash and Sacre. If they got Melo they’d likely bring Pau back and be very close to being capped out. Next season for both the Knicks and Lakers aren’t going to be great except that we’re in the East so we would have a realistic chance to make the playoffs. After next season the we’d have our 2015 first round pick and a ton of cap space to bring in some quality players.

    92. thenoblefacehumper

      lol at the people that say the Knicks are a better team than the Lakers. Our best player right now after Melo is Jose Calderon.

      And the Lakers’ best player is a 35 year old coming off consecutive season ending injuries who just so happens to be the highest paid player in the sport. If your point is it’s easy to see why ‘Melo might think the Lakers are better then sure, I doubt he’s glossed over Kobe’s TS% and medical records. From an actual basketball standpoint though? If ‘Melo goes there at 4/96 and Pau returns aren’t they pretty much capped out at Kobe/Melo/Pau/Randle? Even assuming best case scenarios for both Randle and Kobe it’s hard to see that as a playoff team in the West.

    93. BigBlueAL

      I agree going to the Lakers wouldnt be a smart move but even with an old-ass Kobe I would understand why Melo would be persuaded by Kobe to go play with him for a couple of seasons then he would be the star player once Kobe retired. LA is also a great place to live like NY (hell he lives there during the summer) so that could factor into it as well.

    94. ess-dog

      Perhaps you didn’t read the part where I said “I’m not saying that the Lakers are even the best choice available to him…”

      I’m just saying from Melo’s perspective, I see why he might think that’s a good idea. But it’s silly to say NYC is a way better choice because we have some big expiring contracts, player/coach Fisher, and a rookie GM. Cap space doesn’t mean you’ll field a great team btw (see Amare 2010.)

    95. thenoblefacehumper

      But it’s silly to say NYC is a way better choice because we have some big expiring contracts, player/coach Fisher, and a rookie GM. Cap space doesn’t mean you’ll field a great team btw (see Amare 2010.)

      Of course cap space doesn’t guarantee success, but it makes success more likely than not having cap space due to being tied to a 35 year old Kobe Bryant. Again, I agree that it’s easy to see why ‘Melo might find LA appealing, but I don’t think it’s silly to say the Knicks have a rather significantly better trajectory than the Lakers at the moment (which speaks more to how bad the Lakers’ trajectory is, but still).

    96. hoolahoop

      Diaw for 3 years, $22M? That seems totally excessive. But hey, if there’s a GM I trust, it’s Buford.

      One of the highest IQ players in the league with an array of skills. He can pass like a guard and defend a center. I think it’s a good signing.

    97. hoolahoop

      I don’t think we’ll see anything that resembles the old Kobe ever again. The last time he came back he looked like he aged 10 years. Bloated, slow and old.

    98. Donnie Walsh

      the Lakers are a far worse situation

      I’m not sure what Lala’s career is, but apparently she feels she needs to winter in either NY or LA. And frankly, LA is a hell of a lot nicer in the winter.

    99. BigBlueAL

      Broussard twitter bomb:

      Cleveland has replaced Miami as my frontrunner to land LeBron James…

    100. BigBlueAL

      Now Woj is saying Cavs trying to trade Jarret Jack to open up max slot for LeBron. GOD I hope this happens so I can rank on all my friends down here who are Heat “fans”. Of course if Melo leaves they will rank on me because they all think Melo is amazing since none of them have ever read this site lol.

    101. Kikuchiyo

      If LeBron goes to the Cavs, I hope he says he’s taking his talents to North Beach.

      Lake Erie FTW.

    102. BigBlueAL

      Didnt see this but just read on Twitter that Windhorst was on Sportscenter on ESPN News just now and said the Knicks have made an offer to Pau Gasol and are acting as if they already have Melo signed for whatever its worth.

    103. BigBlueAL

      Now Stephen A. Smith weighs in on Sportscenter!! So according to him if Bosh just says screw this and leaves to Houston the Heat would replace him with Melo. According to him the real key to all this free agency stuff is not Melo or Lebron but Bosh.

    104. lavor postell

      If Melo went to South Beach to join Lebron they may be better on offense this year, but would undoubtedly be worse defensively.

    105. JK47

      If they couldn’t fit LBJ/Bosh/Wade into the salary cap, how the hell are they gonna fit LBJ/Melo/Wade? Do they just tell Wade to get lost? Do they ask Melo to take that $12M contract Bosh was supposed to be taking?

    106. Brian Cronin

      I mean, she’s his wife, so obviously she is going to have a role in where he decides to play, but I don’t think that Los Angeles offers her all that much more opportunities than New York (certainly more than Houston, Dallas and Chicago, though, of course), so I don’t think she will be the deciding factor except to note that she likely prefers him to play in either L.A. or New York. I don’t think she cares beyond that.

    107. Farfa

      From the NYTimes via Truehoop:

      William C. Rhoden of The New York Times: Four years ago, LeBron James set a new tone for free agency when he left Cleveland, using his leverage to determine where he would play and with whom. His move to Miami showed how valuable he was not just to his team but to an entire region, with Cleveland’s economy seeming to take a hit. Anthony should keep that in mind and not accept a nickel less than he feels he is worth. Athletes are conditioned early on to feel grateful to be on the team. The reality is that their schools, and, later, their franchises, depend on the athletes to have a program. Athletes are the show. If the Knicks ask Anthony to take a pay cut, or when Pat Riley appeals to James’s sense of loyalty, the Clippers’ pending sale should be a glowing reminder to say no. In an often coldblooded industry focused on the bottom line, players still invariably lead with their hearts, often to their detriment. The new rules of engagement should be, simply, money first.

      Do people really see the whole “Melo pay cut” thing as a means for the frontman of “JD and the straight shot to spare a few bucks”? I’m really baffled by this. Isn’t it clear that the request for a pay cut derives from a roster building perspective and not a profit/loss account one? I thought at least the Times knew better than this.

    108. Brian Cronin

      Sports has never been the Times’ forte. Not that they haven’t had some excellent sportswriters over the years (especially when they let Knickerblogger writers write stuff for them), but in general, it isn’t something they tend to specialize in, so I would not be surprised to see a comment like that from the Times at all.

    109. Farfa

      Oh, ok. Then I guess it is probably an effect of the Times mythology that we cultivate here in Europe. By the way, Brian, do you ever sleep? :-)

    110. 2FOR18

      That’s typical class warfare stuff from the Times, with a large dash of ignorance of NBA finance.

    111. Frank

      Yeah I don’t know what is with the writers nowadays, but there are clearly 2 different reasons players are being asked to take less — 1) there literally is a salary cap and to sign players in FA you need to have either cap room or exceptions, none of which are infinite sources of $ no matter if the owner is Bill Gates or DRed; 2) owners who refuse to pay the luxury tax (like OKC, Arison, Reinsdorf, etc.).

      Reason 1 is unchangeable at this point. If the players are going to be upset about that now, they need only look at themselves, their union leadership, and the bad deal that they cut — not just this past CBA session but all the ones before them that led to a salary cap. That is not the owners’ fault – it was collective bargaining, and one side was able to stick together with a harder line than the other. So crying about it now is not a solution. So as it is now, there are a finite amount of dollars and exceptions, and if Melo (or whoever) signs for $25MM/year leaving only $40MM + exceptions for the rest of the roster, that will ALWAYS impact the ability to get more talent on the team. Melo being asked to take less has zero to do with Dolan’s willingness to pay the tax (which he has always done without any questions asked, except for maybe the J-Lin thing, which always felt more personal anyway), and so Melo’s handlers are really upset about the wrong things.

      Reason 2 is what the players should be upset about — especially OKC and Miami/LBJ fans. OKC gave away James Harden because they didn’t want to pay the tax. Ridiculous. Sarver sold 1st round picks like crazy to put a few extra $ in his pocket. And not that Mike Miller would’ve been the difference between winning or losing the championship this past season, but I don’t blame Lebron one bit for being mad as hell about an important contributor being let go purely because of Arison wanted to make more money — money that he’s only making because Lebron is on his team.

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