Carmelo Anthony says meeting with Phil Jackson was 'great'

Carmelo Anthony of the Knicks smiles after a Carmelo Anthony of the Knicks smiles after a basket against the Nets at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday, April 2, 2014. Photo Credit: Jim McIsaac

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Carmelo Anthony didn't give any indication which way he was leaning when it comes to his upcoming free agency.

Anthony, speaking to reporters at an event Wednesday night in Manhattan, said his meeting last week with Knicks president Phil Jackson went "great" and he liked the hiring of Derek Fisher as coach. "I like what Phil is doing," Anthony said.

But Anthony reportedly declined to talk about his future.

Anthony has to inform the Knicks by June 23 that he is opting out of his contract. All indications are that he will and become a free agent July 1.

The Knicks can offer Anthony the most money. But he's expected to have other suitors who are contenders now.

The Bulls, Rockets, Heat and Mavericks are teams that could pursue Anthony. Chicago and Houston would need to make some moves to clear space to pay Anthony.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

For Miami to free up money to sign Anthony, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh would have to opt out of their contracts and re-sign at far lower salaries. Anthony, who is scheduled to make $23.3 million next season, would have to take a significant pay cut also.

Anthony likes New York, but he has said his priority is winning. Unless Jackson can make some major trades, the Knicks may not be much better next season. As it stands they could have major cap space in 2015 to sign some marquee free agents.

Jackson said he hoped Anthony would opt in for next season and become a free agent in 2015, which would give the Knicks more flexibility.

Anthony met with Jackson, GM Steve Mills and Fisher last week in Los Angeles.

"It was a great meeting with Phil," Anthony said. "It went well."

The Dolan family owns controlling interests in the  Knicks, Madison Square  Garden and Cablevision.  Cablevision owns Newsday.

Subscribe to Newsday’s sports newsletter for stories, photos and videos about your favorite New York teams plus national sports news and events.

You also may be interested in: