*The New York Daily News is reporting that Carmelo Anthony has decided to stay with the New York Knicks, but ESPN and other outlets are quoting his agent Leon Rose, who says his client “hasn’t made a decision yet” as of Wednesday afternoon.
“No decision yet,” another source told ESPN. “Still up in air.”
Newsday reported that New York Knicks coach Derek Fisher hadn’t been told that Anthony had decided to re-sign with the team, despite the Daily News report saying he had.
Sources told ESPN on Wednesday that a number of rival teams increasingly believe that Anthony was holding off on announcing any decision about his future until LeBron James revealed where he’ll be playing next season.
Sources said that Anthony — whose decision was widely expected before a resolution to James’ situation when free agency began — has kept the Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers and other suitors waiting at least in part to see where James goes and whether there would be any option to join his close friend.
Sources said earlier this week that the Knicks thought they’d know by Monday if Anthony was prepared to commit to new team president Phil Jackson for the long term or sign with the Lakers instead. The Knicks can offer Anthony a five-year maximum deal valued at $129 million, with the Lakers’ max offer topping out at $96 million over four years.
Anthony has gone as silent as James with free agency now more than a week old, sparking the belief that he’s waiting to see if there is a viable opportunity for the two stars to team up.
“He wants to see what LeBron does,” one source with knowledge of Anthony’s thinking told ESPN. “But he can’t wait forever.”
The Knicks have tried to maintain their long-held confidence that Anthony will stay in New York. Anthony held meetings last week with Chicago, Houston, Dallas and the Lakers before granting last word to the Knicks on his interview tour.