The New York Knicks have given Carmelo Anthony until June 26 to decide if he’s going to pick up his contract’s “player option” to remain for at least a year with the Big Apple franchise. Three days away from that ultimatum it appears the star forward’s decision is to opt-out and become a free agent by July 1.
Frank Isola of the New York Daily News and Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports are reporting that indeed “Melo” will be exploring his FA agents which means he can start being courted by interested parties roughly in a week’s time.
A person close to Carmelo Anthony confirms that Melo, as expected, will inform Knicks on Monday that he's opting out. "One hundred percent."
— Frank Isola (@FisolaNYDN) June 22, 2014
As planned, Carmelo Anthony will file notice with Knicks on Monday that he's opted-out of 2014-'15 season on contract, source tells Yahoo. — Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) June 22, 2014
The move is widely expected in the NBA circles although the arrival of new president Phil Jackson and new head coach Derek Fisher provided the Knicks some hope that they can convince Anthony to stay in New York for at least the 2014-2015 NBA season.
Rather, the Knicks will have to work harder in convincing Melo to stay for the long-term—they can offer a five-year contract worth near $130M, the highest offer any NBA team can tender to the veteran forward.
Other NBA teams can offer Anthony of a contract worth only around $100M and the suitors include the Chicago Bulls, Los Angeles Lakers, Dallas Mavericks and Houston Rockets.
Melo is set to officially make the announcement about his free agency on Monday. Is this just a way for Anthony to get the big bucks from New York? Or will he jilt the Knicks to join other teams considered “contenders” moving forward?