Jul 7, 2014, 3:34 PM EDT
Carmelo Anthony’s decision has always been framed as winning vs. money — if he really wanted to win he’d join Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah in Chicago, if he wants the money New York has the most of it. But that is simplistic. Money matters, so does the team and if they can win, but so does lifestyle, what makes your family happy, weather and more. Think about your big life decisions, it’s a balancing act between all those things and where you place the priorities.
Carmelo Anthony is torn on this. That’s clear from the fact that after thinking about it for a weekend we don’t have a decision.
Frank Isola of the New York Daily News spoke to someone reportedly close to Anthony who said the star is really torn between the offers from the Knicks, Lakers and Bulls.
Anthony, 30, is still debating his next move with the Knicks, Lakers and the Bulls as his top three choices, the source claims. Chicago is still in the running despite the fact that the Bulls, barring a sign-and-trade, cannot come close to matching the max deals the Knicks and Lakers offered Anthony last week. However, the Bulls do allow Anthony to stay in the Eastern Conference, play in the large market and join a contending team.
Knicks president Phil Jackson, despite hints to the contrary, offered Anthony a max deal of five years, $129 million. The best the Bulls can do is $75 million over four years. If it was just about taking the most money, Anthony already would have announced his intentions to rejoin the Knicks. But Anthony is intrigued by the Bulls as well as the Lakers, who have the ability to give Anthony a max deal ($96 million) over four years. Anthony also lives in Los Angeles during the off-season and is friends with Kobe Bryant.
Winning matters, but would you leave nearly $55 million on the table for a shot at a ring? That is a lot of scratch, no matter how much you have already made.
The Lakers and Knicks offer variations on the rebuilding team idea — Anthony gets paid big money and is a superstar in a major market (with all the off-the-court advantages that come with it). He already has homes in both cities. Both those teams are a few steps from contention, however. The Lakers have Kobe Bryant and could bring back Pau Gasol, although in the West those three plus other pieces really worth more than the five seed? The Knicks are in the East but it will take a couple years to fix their cap issues.
Still, expectations are an Anthony decision will come sooner rather than later.
As it has always been for Anthony, it comes down to what really matters most to him. Where he will feel the most comfortable, where his family will feel the most comfortable. And that’s not always an easy, clear-cut decision.
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