Report: 'Melo to inform Nets on Monday
The Decision, the sequel, is expected to come Monday for the New Jersey Nets.
Denver Nuggets star Carmelo Anthony is expected to inform the Nets on Monday whether or not he will accept a trade to New Jersey and sign an extension to play there, sources told the New York Post Sunday night.
The Nets and Nuggets have a deal in place pending Anthony's willingness to sign an extension. The Knicks and Nuggets also have the basic framework of a deal that has been worked on all weekend.
According to the New York Times, the Nets would acquire Anthony, along with Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams, Melvin Ely and Renaldo Balkman in a deal built around Derrick Favors, Devin Harris and four first-round draft picks. For salary-cap purposes, the Nuggets would also get Troy Murphy and Ben Uzoh.
After the face-to-face meeting finally took place Saturday between Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov and Anthony, initial reports suggested the Russian billionaire's team was out of the hunt for the Nuggets star. Anthony was described as "non-committal," maybe even unimpressed.
But other indications say the opposite. Prokhorov himself described the meeting as "fantastic" in an interview Sunday with CNBC and several league sources insisted the Nets are still in the running to land Denver's star forward. One source claimed an "air of optimism" remained around the Nets.
"Don't bury them yet," a source involved in the process urged. Another suggested that although there might not be anything significant at the moment, that could change.
And whether Anthony goes to the Nets, goes to the Knicks, extends his contract with Denver or stays with the Nuggets and opts for free agency (which means gambling with almost half of his $83 million guaranteed), it will be resolved soon. The NBA trade deadline is Thursday at 3:00 pm ET.
Anthony said he wanted a resolution by the end of All-Star weekend, but while he was sitting on the Western Conference bench during the third quarter Sunday night, he told TNT's Craig Sager he would be with the Nuggets tomorrow for their game against Memphis.
That doesn't bode well for the Nets.
"(Monday) will determine the fate," said one source, noting the President's Day holiday, when trade conference calls aren't made, adding that it "buys Denver one more day to press the issue."
On Saturday, Anthony met with Prokhorov, King, Nets part-owner and adviser Jay-Z and CEO Brett Yormark in Los Angeles. Prokhorov no doubt pitched his global vision while all on hand stressed the importance of the team's move to Brooklyn, scheduled for the 2012-13 season.
"I had a very good meeting, trying to be friendly and relaxed," Prokhorov told The Post. "I have a great feeling all the time, every minute of my life. I have an express feeling only towards women, but this is a business deal. You have no feeling. Time will tell."
Prokhorov told CNBC: "It was a fantastic meeting, trust me ... we looked into each other's eyes. Just real man talk."
But he added, "It's not a lottery. I don't know," when asked to asses the Nets' chances of landing Anthony.
From the start, the Nets' position has been to not accept a trade without Anthony first agreeing to sign a three-year, $65 million extension, which has been on the table since June.