But Kobe was just a little too slow.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports:
I think the Knicks really care about getting the last meeting. Melo doesn’t have to grant that, but it might be a little unbecoming – depending on what he’s assured New York – if he meets with Kobe afterward.
Whatever. Melo can play by his own rules. If Melo needs to justify it to himself, Kobe is not a team. He’s a friend.
However, if Kobe were going to tilt Melo toward the Lakers and away from the expected Knicks, the ripple effects might have been big. Now, Melo is trying to poach Kobe’s top teammate.
If he follows Melo to the Knicks, Gasol could get only the non-taxpayer exception – $10,276,530 over three years. He’s reportedly seeking a similar salary in single season.
Maybe Gasol really wants to reunite with Phil Jackson or play in the Big Apple, but the Knicks are still a borderline playoff team even with him.
That’s a tough sell for Melo to make.
But if he shows up to pitch Gasol on time, he’s at least doing better than Kobe.