When Carmelo Anthony went on his free agent tour this past summer, Dallas, along with Chicago, Houston and Los Angeles, was one of the select places he chose to consider.
The Rockets and Bulls made a spectacle of Anthony’s meeting with them in an attempt to impress, but the Mavericks took a more understated approach, meeting with Anthony at an undisclosed location to make their relatively brief sales pitch.
In the end, Anthony ended up staying in New York, but Mavericks owner Mark Cuban didn’t need to hear the official decision to know that his team would be ruled out.
“I wouldn’t say no question (Anthony wasn’t signing with the Mavs),’’ Cuban said. “But I wasn’t overly confident — he didn’t say yes.
“Any time someone doesn’t say ‘yes’ to you. . .I’m from that ABC school of selling, always be closing. I didn’t even think I was getting the steak knifes.’’
Of course, the Mavs didn’t wait around for Anthony to make a decision on his future.
“We felt so confident we signed Chandler (Parsons) before (Anthony) made his final decision,’’ Cuban said.
The reason Cuban knew Anthony wasn’t coming to Dallas — besides the fact that he didn’t get an immediate yes — was because the Mavericks were offering nothing more than promises about the future. And that’s something Anthony could get by staying in New York and earning an extra $30 million or so dollars.
Dallas would have been better immediately, of course, but what happens two years in when Dirk Nowitzki is gone? The team would then be in the same spot as the Knicks, having only one superstar and trying to convince others to come join him in free agency.
If Anthony was going anywhere, it would have been to the Bulls, who are set up from both a coaching and a talent standpoint to be among the East’s elite for years. Dallas wasn’t ever that much of a consideration, and Cuban realized it the moment the meeting was finished.
[The sales lingo (and the part about the steak knives) is a reference to this classic and profanity-laced scene from the 1992 movie, Glengarry Glen Ross.]