Melo preparing for the All-Star Game in New Orleans.
New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony has revealed that while he still intends on testing free agency, he is willing to accept less money to re-sign with the team which will in turn allow them to attract big-name free agents.
Anthony has previously said that he plans to opt out of the final year of his contract and test free agency this summer, and he addressed the situation again in New Orleans during All-Star weekend.
With speculation linking him with a move to the Chicago Bulls, the 29-year-old has insisted that his “first priority” is to re-sign with the Knicks, although their disappointing season this year could have an effect on his decision.
“I’ve never been a guy that comes into a situation, when it’s not going well, to leave,” Anthony said, as reported by ESPN. “That’s not my personality.”
“Any opportunity I have to build that up in New York, I’d do it. I told people all the time, always say, ‘If it takes me taking a pay cut, I’ll be the first one on [Knicks owner] Mr. [James] Dolan’s steps saying take my money and let’s build something strong over here.'”
If Anthony re-signs for the maximum allowed under the current rules, his contract would be worth $129m over five seasons.
However, he has dismissed the notion that his decision will have anything to do with money, and he is purely focused on making the best decision in order for him to win a championship.
Anthony talked up the buzz he gets from playing in New York and revealed that he intends on helping attract some players to come to the city.
As a result, the general feeling from his interview on “SportsCenter” was that he envisages himself still being with the Knicks for years to come, although he did end by saying that at the end of the season “everything will be laid out on the table” and it will be up to the Knicks management to act on his ambition.
Given the salaries of Amar’e Stoudemire, Tyson Chandler and Andrea Bargnani, the Knicks will be unable to sign any high-profile free agents this summer.
However, if Anthony is willing to take a pay-cut, they could look at 2015 with the likes of Kevin Love and Rajon Rondo potentially on the market.