Carmelo Anthony renews push for trade to New York or Chicago; Denver in no rush


Thumbnail image for anthony_high5.jpgIf you’re wondering why so many — and at times conflicting — rumors are coming out about the Carmelo Anthony trade situation in the last few days, here’s your answer.

Anthony and his CAA team (led by agent Leon Rose) have stepped up to pressure a move before training camp starts, according to ESPN. And the two teams on the top of his list are the Knicks and the Bulls.

None of that is new, this is just a renewed effort to get things done now.

Denver, however, remains in no rush. There are some within the organization that want to make one more push to keep him, to their mind having him around his teammates and the city (and George Karl) gives them one more real chance. The Nuggets three-year, $65 million contract extension offer is still on the table.

In addition, bringing Anthony to camp will make him look like the bad guy, make him the focus of frustrated fans and not the organization. Anthony would like to avoid that, the Nuggets have no such interest.

What’s more, being patent right now might put pressure on teams interested in Anthony to up what they are offering. Denver wants young players and picks to speed along any rebuilding process they would have to start by moving Anthony.

Four teams seem to really be in play — Chicago and New York on Melo’s end, with Houston and New Jersey in the mix as well.

As for when something might go down, don’t expect Denver to be swayed much by the latest pressure.  

Somebody looks comfortable: Paul George drops 20 in first quarter

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Paul George‘s first experience starting as a power forward was going up against Anthony Davis — not just one of the best power forwards in the game, one of the handful of best players in the game period. That didn’t go well for George, and he wasn’t happy about it.

His second experience was in another preseason game Tuesday, going up against the Pistons and their four, Ersan İlyasova. He’s not quite as intimidating.

George scored 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, 4-of-5 on threes — and that was just the first quarter (you can see it all in the video above).

As we have said before, George at the four is not a bad call by the Pacers, but some of that depends on the matchup. On the nights the Pacers face Davis or Blake Griffin or LaMarcus Aldridge or Zach Randolph (or a handful of others) the Pacers’ coaching staff is going to have to adjust. But there are a lot of nights where George at the four is going to force the other team to adjust, and that will play into the Pacers’ hands.

Is DeMarcus Cousins MVP worthy? “It’s mine to grab”

DeMarcus Cousins

Last season, DeMarcus Cousins received zero MVP votes (the same as every year of his career). Even though he averaged 24.1 points, and 12.7 rebounds a game, which was enough to get him his first All-Star berth, MVP is another thing entirely. Only players on winning teams tend to draw the attention of MVP voters.

This season, can Cousins — arguably the best center in the game — get in the conversation?

He thinks it’s more than just that, he told Kevin Ding at Bleacher Report.

The topic is the 2015-16 NBA MVP award and whether it could be reachable for DeMarcus Cousins.

“Reachable, man?” Cousins told Bleacher Report, his voice rising high. “It’s mine to grab.”

As noted above, the only way Cousins gets into the conversation — fair or not — is if the Kings are in the playoffs (at the very least). He understands that.

“It’s going to take a full team effort,” Cousins said. “I’ll try to play at a high level and bring my team along with me.”

Vlade Divac built a Kings’ team designed to start winning now — as you would expect from a team a year away from moving into a new arena they need to fill. Owner Vivek Ranadive is not about selling hope anymore, he wants to sell wins.

I think Cousins can help provide that.

I’m less sold on the cast around him being able to help.