Sportress of Blogitude

Carmelo Anthony’s contract $5 million short of max, includes no-trade clause


The prevailing theory throughout the entire Carmelo Anthony Free Agency Saga that unfolded over the past few weeks was that the ability of the New York Knicks to pay the superstar more than the Chicago Bulls, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers, etc. ultimately would prove to be the deciding factor in Carmelo’s ultimate decision.

While we’re never know for sure if Anthony’s return to the Knickerbockers had nothing to do with his decision, everything to do with his decision — or likely, somewhere in between — the fact remains that he took $5 million less than what the Knicks could have offered him, according to a New York Post report.

The reported contract terms between Anthony and the Knicks is five years for $124 million. The arrival at that less-than-max number had an added bonus in that the Knicks freed up $1.4 million in cap space in 2015. The team reportedly will use that money to pursue free-agent center Marc Gasol.

“He did exactly what we kind of asked him to do. Give us a break in the early part of his contract so that when we have some wiggle room next year, which is hopefully big enough wiggle room, we can exploit it, provide a more competitive team for our group,” Jackson said a few days ago in Las Vegas following a Knicks summer league practice.

Another interesting component of the contract terms is it includes a maximum 15% trade kicker, meaning that if Carmelo were willing to waive his no-trade clause, teams wishing to trade for Anthony may be turned off by it. It also makes it more difficult for Anthony to force a trade, although the contract also includes a now-standard opt-out clause after four years.

What this all means is that Anthony and the Knicks appear to be tied to each other for at least four seasons, although that certainly is not set in stone. The fact that Anthony was willing to leave $5 million on the table indicates he at least had made the appearance that he wants the Knicks to improve the team around him and that he’s in it to win it.