Knicks president Steve Mills added to the Melodrama on Friday, omitting Carmelo Anthony’s name in a blog entry he wrote about the upcoming season on the official Madison Square Garden website.
In the blog entry, titled “A New Day for the Knicks — The Journey Begins,” Mills spelled out his vision for the 2017-18 team. While his message mostly focused on the team’s youth, the absence of Anthony, the team’s leading scorer last season, seemed conspicuous.
The Knicks declined to comment further on Mills’ blog entry.
In the entry, Mills accentuated youth in discussing the team’s roster, writing, “And our plan to become more youthful and athletic is underway with 22-year-old Kristaps Porzingis, the return of Tim Hardaway Jr., 25, Willy Hernangomez, 23, and with the debut of our 1st round draft pick, Frank Ntilikina, just 19 . . . [Ntilikina], Porzingis and Hardaway, along with Hernangomez and Ron Baker, will exemplify a new defensive mindset that puts a premium on making stops.
“Only from there can a productive offense flow. We will emphasize ball movement, body movement, spacing and screening, while understanding that these changes will be a work in progress. We may not be there at first, but that’s the brand of ball our players will aspire to fulfill. These players, still young, intent on enhancing their games, engaged in a common objective, are already altering the atmosphere surrounding the club.’’
Mills was noncommittal about Anthony’s future during a news conference to introduce new general manager Scott Perry last month. At that gathering, Mills said the team would continue to explore trade possibilities for Anthony, who has a no-trade clause but reportedly would waive it if a deal can be worked out for him to go to the Rockets. Also at that time, Mills did not rule out Anthony being with the Knicks when camp opens next month. Mills also said the team would not buy out the $54 million remaining on Anthony’s contract.
Perhaps the most operative remarks made by Mills that day were: “I think we will be a good, developing team if Carmelo is part of the team. We’ll be a good, developing team if he isn’t.’’
In the blog entry, Mills better defined Perry’s role with the Knicks.
“Today’s game demands nearly constant recruiting in one way or another, of college players and free agents,’’ Mills wrote. “With Scott’s breadth of experience, from his college coaching days to the front office of the Pistons, Magic and Kings, he knows how to build strong relationships, attract great athletes and transform cultures. He has a directness about him. That’s the complete package.
“While I will continue to draw upon my relationships around the league, Scott will spearhead conversations with other general managers. He’ll manage the roster and decide who best fits into the overall strategy. Meantime, I will be challenging him to ensure the thought process is on the mark, with the big picture in mind. I will trust his judgment. His people skills give me full confidence he will be a perceptive recruiter and cement the Knicks as a free agent destination.”