As I’ve written before, either Carmelo Anthony or Phil Jackson will have to leave the Knicks after this season as the two simply can not coexist. Well, it was reported Thursday that the Knicks had exercised their two-year option on Jackson so apparently, the person that will be gone is Anthony.
During the Knicks final game, which he did suit up for, Anthony acknowledged that the Knicks “might” look to trade him.
Jackson tried numerous times to work on a deal for Anthony prior to the trade deadline earlier this season, contacting the Cleveland Cavaliers, Los Angeles Clippers, and Boston Celtics, but nothing every materialized.
“We’ve not been able to win with [Anthony] on the court at this time,” Jackson told reporters Friday. “I think the direction with our team is that he’s a player that would be better off somewhere else and using his talent somewhere where he can win or chase that championship.”
Anthony previously said that he wants to stay with the Knicks, but he also reiterated that he wants to win. When he met with Jackson, the Knicks president told Anthony that the team was heading towards a rebuild.
“We’ll take into account (Anthony’s) consideration,” Jackson said. “This is not a situation we’re going to dump you. We have not been able to win.”
Anthony has two years left on his contract and a no-trade clause so where he plays next season is ultimately up to him.
When asked what he would do if told that the Knicks wanted to rebuild, which they do, he said he would have to “respect it” and take it into account when deciding his future.
“It would have to be a decision I really sit down and think about and figure it out. I’m going to have to do a lot of figuring things out right now — sit down with my team, sit down with my family, really figure this out, kind of really put what’s important to me at this point in my career, which is winning,” said Anthony.
Anthony is reportedly leaning strongly towards a trade if the Knicks can find him a suitable team.