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Rumor: Knicks only team willing to pay Melo the full max

Chuck - Red's Army February 24, 2014 Around the NBA 18 Comments

MeloCs Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders doesn’t see a huge $$$ market for Carmelo Anthony should the Knicks forward opt-out of his contract following this season. There will be demand for Melo, but likely not at the price point he desires:

Sources close to the situation say that the Knicks are likely the only would-be suitor for Anthony willing to meet the full $22.45 million per year starting price on a new contract. Teams like the Chicago Bulls and L.A. Lakers that are constantly mentioned as possible free agent destinations are said to be unwilling to go that high in a deal for Anthony, who will turn 30 in May.

The Bulls are expected to be able to clear about $14 million in salary cap space if they use their one-time amnesty roster cut on Carlos Boozer’s final $16.8 million contract year. To get in range of the full MAX-level offer the Knicks can put on the table, the Bulls would have to basically give away an additional player like Taj Gibson or Joakim Noah to create the room to sign Anthony to a deal in that price range.

The Lakers may have enough salary cap space to sign Anthony to a full MAX offer, but that would all but exhaust their salary cap space and the word is the Lakers have eyes on a few smaller and slightly cheaper free agents to surround guard Kobe Bryant.

New York can give Melo the most money. And by most, I’m talking 5 years, $129 million.

Other teams can offer him a measly 4 years, $96 million.

What’s the soon-to-be 30-year-old Melo worth? I think 4 years, $70 million is a fair offer. That’s about $17-$18 mil per season. But I’m thinking pragmatically, a trait most GMs lack.

The Celtics will gain significant cap flexibility this summer, but I don’t see Melo landing Boston.

(photoshop courtesy Sean Reilly

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  • Curt Hays

    This makes a good point. If Melo wants a ring, he better quickly pull his head out and become a member of a team instead of being the sole proprietor of team Carmelo.

    • adam

      Melo does want to play with Rondo. And we have a Rondo. We could offer him 13 mil a year . Bring him into the Celtics culture, maybe that changes him?

      • Curt Hays

        I’d hope that’s the way it’d work out. But I think there has to be a catalyst BEFOREhand or he’d never agree to play in Boston.

  • Dustin Chapman

    Melo is gonna get paid.

  • Rajon P. Rondo

    Please, no Melo for Boston. I’d cry, he’s the exact type of player that we don’t want.

  • RedsLoveChild

    There is no “I” in team….but, there is definitely a “ME” in Carmelo.

  • bill_nair

    I gotta agree with you on his value Chuck. Id say almost every player making the max is vastly overpaid. Melo is extremely talented but he is not worth $20mill per. There are maybe 2 or 3 players in this league worth that every decade (hell Lebron is going to enter his first $20mill season this coming season). Looks like the CBA is bringing down the price on these players.

  • Frank Aziza

    If the Celtics brought him in does anyone think he could be willing to focus on defense and be content averaging 20 points a night. Give the game what it needs. Have a Paul Pierce mindset. Is that possible with this dude ???????

    • eddysamson

      With the way people have been talking about him (and the Knicks) since he’s been in NY and the fact that he STILL hasn’t changed, I’m gunna say its not possible.

      • adam

        yeah, but look at the knicks culture they have there. it isn’t exactly good.

    • KGino

      No. This guy has had the same poor attitude/defense since he came into the league.

    • bill_nair

      Most people will tell you no, I don’t think he could on THIS Celtics squad but I believe he can. Hes already a pretty solid defender everyone just seems to pile on the same crap with him (hes a chucker, he doesnt play defense, etc.) Hes had a fantastic year and with a player he respects and trusts (i.e. CP3) I believe he’d be what everyone says he cant.

      The fact that I had to write that last sentence though says alot.

  • KGino

    This is the only Carmelo I want…

  • adam

    i could see him at a 14-16 million a year max. that won’t handicap the team too much with that kind of deal. these guys want to get 20 million a year yet they forget they need to have teammates on their team to win. that huge salary takes away from that.

  • pierce Hart

    nah we’ll pass on Melo and trade for Love probably draft Embiid too because we always win the lottery. probably a “luckier” team than NOLA who landed the number 1 pick the exact same year they were bought over.

    • Curt Hays

      Hahaha, the luck of the Sternish…

  • frickenWaaaltah

    In this still relatively new CBA, the max is a trap. Almost nobody is “worth” it in that the max amounts were not reduced, while the ability of teams to spend in general was reduced. The result is that a max contract takes up a larger percentage of the room a team has to work with while building a contender.

  • jason benn

    dang now i really want a carmelo now yummy!