Melo is on board.
“We still got years in this league,’’ Anthony said Wednesday after the Knicks defeated the Bulls, 115-107, at United Center. “Everybody dreams sometimes.
Everybody has fantasies. We’d all have to take pay cuts. I’d take one. I think at that time we’d want to go someplace warm. Later — [close to] retirement.’’
Someplace warm? That doesn’t sound like New York, though Melo says his loyalty to the Knicks shouldn’t be questioned.
But the fact that Melo said he’s willing to take a pay cut shows some real interest in the plan. Melo might have joined LeBron and Wade with the Heat in 2010 if he’d taken a shorter rookie-scale extension like those two. Instead, Melo opted for maximum financial security, just as he mostly did in re-signing with the Knicks two years ago. (Though he took slightly less than his maximum amount, it was more than he would’ve gotten elsewhere.)
Melo can’t become a free agent until 2018, and the Collective Bargaining Agreement prevents him from renegotiating his salary downward. So, if the four stars are going to join forces before then, Melo can’t take a pay cut. They’ll either have to come to New York, or he’ll have to be traded to another team. In a sense, it’s easier to pledge a pay cut when rules prevent you from taking one.
But when the time comes and Melo can put his money where his mouth is, he at least sounds interested.