Report: Carmelo Anthony still expects Knicks to trade him to Rockets


Carmelo Anthony sees a potential super team forming in Houston, one that would have the best shot to knock off the Warriors next season, and he wants to be part of it. He’s willing to waive his no trade clause to go there.

That problem is he has a massive contract paying him $55 million over the next two years, and his trade value is at an all-time low. The Knicks have no motivation to take a crappy deal — Phil Jackson may have been willing to do that just to get ‘Melo out of town, the new Steve Mills/Scott Perry regime is not.

Still, Anthony still expects the trade with the Rockets to go down, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

As New York Knicks president Steve Mills and general manager Scott Perry pursue a meeting with Carmelo Anthony in the coming days, league sources told ESPN that the 10-time All-Star is counting on the franchise to carry out its previously agreed upon mandate to trade him to the Houston Rockets…

Anthony, 33, has been willing to waive his no-trade clause for Houston and Cleveland, but in recent weeks, he has begun to prioritize a trade to the Rockets to join Chris Paul and James Harden over the Cavaliers and LeBron James, league sources said.

With Perry’s hiring from Sacramento and the promotion of Steve Mills to president, the Knicks have paused those trade discussions, in part because New York has been unhappy with the recent proposed returns on an Anthony deal, league sources said.

Anthony wants to be traded to the Rockets. That’s nice, I want to walk out the door of my house and hop in my Maserati Gran Turismo convertible and drive around town. Doesn’t mean it’s going to happen.

The Rockets may be motivated to bring in Anthony, but they are not loaded with young players that could fit with Kristaps Porzingis, nor do they have a lot of high draft picks to move, so what can they really offer? Plus, to make this work financially, the Rockets need to move Ryan Anderson and his three-year, $60 million contract. The Knicks don’t want that back, so the two sides tried to find a third and fourth team to come into the trade to take on that deal, but there were no takers (because any team willing to take on Anderson’s contract is going to want a lot of sweetners such as young players and picks to do it).

A number of teams have been rumored to be part of the deal, including New Orleans and Portland, but they are not going to make a Western Conference foe in Houston better out of the goodness of their hearts, and no deal has been found. Wojnarowski reports that the Trail Blazers will only be part of the deal if ‘Melo expands the number of places he’s willing to be traded to and comes to them. The Knicks would like to see that list of potential landing spots where Anthony would waive his no trade clause expand and give them options, but that doesn’t seem likely right now.

My sense: Anthony will start the season a Knick. Which may be a media circus, but if he is demanding to go to only one of a couple of teams, and there is no good deal to be had because ‘Melo’s trade value is so low, the new Knicks management will wait out the market.

Report: Michele Roberts to seek second contract as players’ union head

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Michele Roberts entered the NBA’s player union in a tumultuous time — long-time union president Billy Hunter had been ousted in a rancorous fight, the union felt adrift, and negotiations with the NBA on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement were looming (and players felt they had been screwed in the last CBA, following the lockout).

Roberts, the first female head of a professional sports labor union, settled things down. She cleaned up the union finances and made them more transparent to players, she worked hard to establish relationships with the players, and while she rattled some sabers with the NBA in negotiations, she also worked in a non-combative way with Adam Silver and team (unlike the Billy Hunter/David Stern relationship) and got a deal done the players liked without a lockout or labor mess.

Roberts’ contract with the union is up, but she is going to ask for a new deal — one she likely gets — reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

With an original four-year agreement set to expire in September, Michele Roberts plans to seek a new contract as the executive director of the National Basketball Players Association, sources tell ESPN…

Roberts had strongly considered staying in the NBPA’s executive director role for only the length of her original contract — and expressed that to the union’s senior membership — but has recently decided to pursue a longer tenure, sources said.

NBPA president Chris Paul played a significant part in Roberts’ hiring in July 2014 and he has built a strong working relationship with Roberts.

Roberts also has a good relationship with the star-heavy executive committee of the union — CP3, LeBron James, Stephen Curry and others — making it likely she gets a new deal.

As for what’s next, at the front of that list Roberts is working with Silver and others on reforming the NBA’s one-and-done rule (it was supposed to be part of the CBA negotiations but was too big and complex an issue to fold into that timeline).

Neither the owners or players can opt out of the CBA for four more years (and if neither side does it runs a couple more beyond that) so labor peace will continue in the NBA for a while.

Isaiah Thomas rewarded on epic flop with offensive foul call vs. Heat

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Why do NBA players flop on defense? Because it works.

While there is less of it than there was a couple of years back — when the NBA made a big show about calling more flops and warning (then eventually fining players a pittance) for the move — it still exists. Case in point, this impressive one from Isaiah Thomas of the Lakers on Tyler Johnson of the Heat Friday night (hat tip AminElHassavag at NBA Reddit).

Was there a little contact, sure, but Thomas fell back like he was shot by the second gunman on the grassy knoll. He exaggerated the contact, which is the definition of flopping. Thing is, he got the call (the ref who made the call, from his position, might only have seen the contact and not necessarily the extent of exaggeration, but that’s where the other officials need to step in).

Not that everything went Thomas’ way Friday night.

Suns’ Marquese Chriss, Jared Dudley fined $25,000 each for knocking down Ricky Rubio


Marquese Chriss and Jared Dudley got off light.

There should have been suspensions involved for the cheap shots leveled on Ricky Rubio by the pair during Thursday night’s blowout Jazz win. Instead, the pair were fined $25,000 a piece by the league Saturday for this incident.

Rubio has a knee contusion from the incident Jazz coach Quin Snyder confirmed, however, Rubio is available to play Saturday vs. the Kings.

Dudley was given a flagrant 2 and ejected at the time, Chriss was handed just a flagrant 1 for his escalation. I don’t completely buy Dudley’s explanation here either — I think they were pissed Rubio stepped over a down Chriss to inbound the ball and made him pay for it — but he did own up to it being excessive.

So to be clear, if you throw a haymaker and miss — as Aaron Afflalo did recently — that’s a two-game suspension. But if you throw or body check a player to the ground, that’s just 25 large, no time missed. Players wanting retaliation will take note of that.

Roulette tables are less random than the NBA’s enforcement policies.

Check out Terrance Ferguson’s acrobatic layup vs. Clippers (VIDEO)


It was supposed to be an alley-oop.

However, Raymond Felton‘s pass was low. And not just a little low, a few feet low.

Oklahoma City’s athletic rookie Terrance Ferguson was leaving the ground as the pass was thrown, meaning he had to make an in-air adjustment — and the results were spectacular.