Many people within the New York Knicks‘ organization felt that superstar Carmelo Anthony would have made a decision on whether or not to return to the Big Apple by the end of the holiday weekend. Since that didn’t happen there may be reason to panic, but I feel like they shouldn’t be too worried.
Anthony is taking the smart approach to this by taking his time. LeBron James is the best player in the world, the best player currently on the market and naturally the most coveted signing for this offseason. James’ decision does not only impact him, but it also impacts the decisions of a lot of other players, like Chris Bosh, Anthony and all 29 of the teams that he doesn’t end up with. By waiting for what James does, Anthony can base his decision off of that. For example, if James picks the Cleveland Cavaliers, Bosh would most likely go somewhere else like the Houston Rockets, giving Anthony more options like, say, going to Miami to play for Pat Riley and the Miami Heat if he felt that was his best option.
The speculation of free agency is both the most intriguing part of it and what drives people crazy. Anthony, and the teams he is deciding from, just need to relax to see where the even bigger chips land first. As far as Anthony is concerned, there are a couple of guarantees that can help us narrow down where his landing spot could be. For starters, the hometown New Yorker has wanted to stay there and win there. It is his top choice, the place where he can get the most money and president Phil Jackson and company feel as though they made a good pitch to keep their most valuable player on their side.
I also feel that it is safe to say that it is down to an Eastern Conference team, specifically the Knicks and the Chicago Bulls. I don’t doubt that the Los Angeles Lakers and star Kobe Bryant made a great pitch that Anthony would have to consider, but going there just does not make sense for him. They may be one of the best organizations in American sports — they have been doing this for years — but they have nothing on their roster currently. They are in even more of a rebuilding mode than the Knicks, and the Western Conference has about 10 or 11 teams that will be competing for a playoff spot next year. The Lakers, in my opinion, not being one of them. Maybe Anthony would make them a low seed, but it would be hard for them to immediately compete for a championship next year like he wants. If he stays in the East, he could go to Chicago and most likely become the favorite to come out as the conference’s representative in the Finals. If he goes to the Knicks, the conference is so unpredictable that they could end up being a top four seed, what many thought they would be a lock for this past season when they missed the playoffs. The Eastern Conference is a safe bet for Anthony since he’s looking to win ASAP.
With all of this said, the Knicks should be a little worried about Anthony, but they should be comfortable knowing that he is being smart and patient about his decision. Waiting to see other dominoes fall is smart because it will alter where certain players go and make his chances of winning different in certain locations. If it is meant to be, there is no doubt that Anthony will gladly walk through the doors of Madison Square Garden as a Knickerbocker once again.