In this Dec. 12, 2010, photo, Denver Nuggets' Carmelo Anthony,...

In this Dec. 12, 2010, photo, Denver Nuggets' Carmelo Anthony, right, works against New York Knicks' Wilson Chandler during an NBA basketball game in New York. Credit: AP

Amar'e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony finally can end the charade this weekend in Los Angeles.

The two have denied being in touch with each other about the possibility of teaming up in New York before Thursday's trade deadline, but they'll get to be face-to- face for the next three days, culminating with Sunday's All-Star Game at Staples Center.

Coincidentally, the two friends also were chosen to serve as assistant coaches in tonight's Friday's Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam, which will feature Knicks guard Landry Fields on the rookie team.

Once again, Stoudemire will be directly involved with the hottest trade rumor at the All-Star break. This time, though, he isn't the one being traded.

Last year, he and LeBron James mugged for cameras in Dallas, pretending to be clueless about talks the Suns and Cavaliers were having about sending Stoudemire to Cleveland to join James. The Cavs refused to give up J.J. Hickson in the deal, and the rest is history.

The Knicks are against overpaying the Nuggets for Anthony, but multiple sources indicate Donnie Walsh is ready to pay a reasonable price, which means giving up young talent such as Wilson Chandler and/or Danilo Gallinari. The teams are engaged in negotiations, with parameters set, but there still are a great many variables regarding how many players will be involved.

All-Star weekend would seem to provide an opportunity for the teams to talk in person, but a source with knowledge of the situation said, "Nothing ever gets done during All-Star weekend." Neither Walsh nor recently hired director of pro player personnel Mark Warkentien will be in Los Angeles.

Assistant GM Allan Houston and MSG Sports president Scott O'Neil will be there, along with owner James Dolan, as he is every year, for the annual Board of Governors meeting, which will be the most important event of the weekend. Commissioner David Stern is expected to outline his plan for collective bargaining. The current CBA expires June 30, and if a new deal isn't reached by then, the league is certain to lock out its players.

As for Stoudemire's condition going into Sunday's game, he said his sprained right big toe, which caused him to miss last Saturday's game against the Nets, feels "great" and left his minutes up to Eastern Conference coach Doc Rivers.

Stoudemire, making his sixth All-Star appearance, was asked if there is any star in particular he is looking forward to seeing in L.A. "I met them all," he said. "That's the great thing about New York; they all migrate here for some reason."

Then he added with a smile, "I haven't met Beyoncé yet."

The Dolan family owns

controlling interests in the Knicks, MSG and Cablevision.

Cablevision owns Newsday.

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