Carlos Boozer, Carmelo Anthony, Jimmy Butler

Carmelo Anthony liked ‘Melo to Chicago’ sign at Knicks-Bulls game


(video via CSN Chicago)

Asked what he thought of a “Melo to Chicago” sign in the stands during the Knicks’ loss to the Bulls on Sunday, Carmelo Anthony didn’t simply pass on the question like most in his situation would have.

“It was a good sign,” Melo said with a laugh. “It was a good sign. I don’t know what you want me to say about that.”

So, Melo wants to join the Bulls as a free agent this summer? Or he likes being courted by Chicago, even if he has no intention of reciprocating the interest? Or he thinks the sign was well-designed?

Whatever you read into his quote probably reflects what you wanted to see happen before he uttered it.

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At minimum, though, Melo’s press conference should make the Knicks even more concerned about their chances of keeping him. It wasn’t just that he liked the sign. He also called New York’s season “embarrassing” and “frustrating.”

With no cap room and few assets, the Knicks will likely return a similar roster – plus or minus Melo – next season. Would he really want to return to that? If so, why? Serious. Why?

“I can’t even see next year. S—, I can’t even see tomorrow at this point, man” Melo said. “It’s hard for me to focus on that  while going through the journey right now.”

I guess that’s relatively good news for the Knicks, whose future is dismal. Better keep Melo’s mind off that fact, though they’d be better served with a different distraction than their miserable present.

Stan Van Gundy rips ‘selfish’ Pistons

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The Pistons had just 19 assists – to 22 turnovers – in their 93-83 loss to the Nets last night.

Stan Van Gundy was none too pleased.

On offensive problems:

I told them in there – that was the first thing – we’re not playing together at all. I thought it was a very selfish performance, and guys wouldn’t just pass the ball to open men. They wanted to see if they could take one more dribble to get their own shot, so the passing angles were gone. I just thought we forced play after play after play. We’re not willing to move the ball

On Reggie Jackson, who scored seven points on 3-of-10 shooting with six assists and six turnovers, and was coming off Achilles soreness:

He was not good at all. He was forcing everything.

On injuries to point guards – Jackson, Brandon Jennings and Steve Blake – hindering the team’s flow in practice and that carrying over to the game:

We could probably make a lot of excuses for our guys, but we were selfish.

Van Gundy is clearly trying to send a message, and the preseason is the best time to do it.

But it’s somewhat troubling he had to do it after this game.

Eight of the 10 Pistons who played against Brooklyn project to make the regular-season rotation. Joel Anthony played over Aron Baynes, and once healthy, Blake could challenge Spencer Dinwiddie to become back up point guard – at least until Jennings is ready. Otherwise, Detroit – with Jackson, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Marcus Morris, Ersan Ilyasova, Andre Drummond, Jodie Meeks, Stanley Johnson and Anthony Tolliver – looked similar to its opening-night lineup.

Van Gundy is blunt, but he doesn’t tell the media things he hasn’t already directly told his players. They appreciate that.

He’d appreciate them getting this message.

Report: Dwight Howard didn’t have offseason surgery

Dwight Howard
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Dwight Howard said he played with a torn MCL and meniscus in the Western Conference finals – pretty shocking news that few knew what to make of.

So, um, did he have offseason surgery?

Calvin Watkins of ESPN:

Howard obviously feels great about his health now, so maybe this was the right course.

We’ll never how Howard would have performed if fully healthy, but he averaged 14.4 points and 14.4 rebounds in 35.1 minutes per game against the Warriors during the conference finals. How bad could the injuries have been?