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With the Celtics fading in the first round, the chances of Carmelo Anthony wearing green are increasing. According to an NBA source, the Celtics coaching staff was in favor of trading for Anthony at the trade deadline, but general manager Danny Ainge had too many reservations. One of Ainge’s concerns, according to a source, was an Anthony trade would have given Boston no real cap space to work with for the 2017 free-agent class.
The Post has learned that in talks with the Celtics, their defensive small forward Jae Crowder would be a major player of interest for Knicks president Phil Jackson. In fact, Jackson lamented not trading for Crowder when he was on the table in the 2014 trade talks with the Mavericks for Tyson Chandler. Crowder is an active, gritty defender who can shoot from 3-point range.
Neuro: @stevekylerNBA What’s your feeling on the Melo to Celtics rumours? Steve Kyler: Celtics not interested and Melo not open to a trade #thesearenotthedroidsyouarelookingfor
Anthony has privately told teammates, too: He refuses to let Jackson run him out of the Knicks. The Knicks have contacted three teams – the Los Angeles Clippers, Boston Celtics and Cleveland Cavaliers – about possible Anthony trades. The Clippers and Cavaliers have interest, but only in cobbling together packages that include role players, league sources told The Vertical.
Boston’s shown minimal interest in Anthony, preferring to continue its pursuit of persuading Chicago (Jimmy Butler) and Indiana (Paul George) to engage in trade talks that involve two younger, more well-rounded stars.
Anthony has privately indicated an interest in listening to trades to those three teams, but the Knicks have been unable to find a trade package that they’re willing to accept, sources said. The NBA trade deadline is Feb. 23.
But the C’s do have interest in Anthony for themselves, as well. They have for a long time. And it’s no doubt their attention gained an even greater degree when word filtered out that the Celts are one of the clubs for whom Carmelo would consider waiving his no-trade clause. The question in this case, and, really, in every case, is price. According to multiple sources, there have been, as of the weekend, no formal trade talks between the Celts and New York, but that was largely because the Knicks are believed to be asking a Melo’s ransom for the star.
The Knicks haven’t given up hope on including the Celtics as a partner in a potential deal for Carmelo Anthony, sending a scout to Saturday’s Celtics-Bucks game. While Celtics management told the Knicks they aren’t interested in the nine-time All-Star, the Knicks are pushing to move Anthony, according to an NBA source, and they’re intrigued by some of the Celtics’ players.
A report out of Boston, in contradiction to an ESPN story from Friday, stated the Celtics still have some interest, but as previously reported by The Post, Boston has no intention of giving up any of the first-round picks it controls from the Nets. They have their own picks that could work in a deal along with expiring contracts of Amir Johnson and Jonas Jerebko. Jackson is known to like defensive forward Jae Crowder. The Boston report stated the Knicks had a pro scout at the Celtics game in Milwaukee Saturday.
Green_Fever: We heard in BOS Celts had no interest in Melo. Is any trade rumor ever truly dead? Do Cs rly say “No. Never. Bye” Steve Kyler: I was told they don’t view Melo as complimentary to what they are trying to build. Not everyone fits everywhere.
A source indicated that Knicks president Phil Jackson has instructed management to move Anthony, who has a no-trade clause but included the Celtics as one of the teams for whom he’d waive the clause. Boston could become part of a potential three-team deal that would send Anthony to another club, perhaps the Clippers. An NBA source said Celtics coach Brad Stevens would embrace coaching Anthony, but president of basketball operations Danny Ainge has rejected any deal. That hasn’t stopped the Knicks from scouting Celtics players just in case Boston is willing to become part of a trade.
Armed with a hope that Carmelo Anthony will eventually waive his no-trade clause, the New York Knicks have reached out to the Boston Celtics, Los Angeles Clippers and Cleveland Cavaliers to probe their interest in a trade, league sources told The Vertical.
According to a source, it’s doubtful Boston would give up any of its Nets’ first-rounders, but they can add their own less-desirable 2018 first-round pick, Crowder and expiring deals of Amir Johnson ($12 million) and Jonas Jerebko ($5 million). Knicks owner James Dolan probably would have to add a $3 million sweetener. “Boston would take a flier, but they aren’t going to give up what the Knicks want,’’ one NBA GM said. “The reality is no one will. A large percentage of teams won’t take him.’’
The Celtics expressed interest in Carmelo Anthony before the trade deadline, according to an ESPN.com report. Two NBA sources told The Post that interest was not expressed to Knicks officials and no talks took place between the teams. Sources indicated the Celtics asked advisers of Carmelo Anthony if the Knicks star still was entrenched in not waiving his no-trade clause. The ESPN report stated it was still unclear if the Knicks and Celtics had trade talks but it was misrepresented elsewhere.
Carmelo Anthony denied that he blocked a potential blockbuster deal to the Boston Celtics last week, telling the Daily News that Knicks management never approached him about waiving his no-trade clause. “No,” Anthony said late Wednesday in Indianapolis. “Heck no.”
The News reported two weeks ago that the Celtics, Cavs and Knicks had engaged in preliminary discussions about a deal. Those talks never progressed, however, because Anthony had made it clear he did not want to be dealt. On Wednesday, ESPN reported that the Celtics were dealing directly with the Knicks about a trade for Anthony that would have included a first round pick that originally belonged to the Brooklyn Nets. It is believed that an additional draft pick as well David Lee’s expiring contract and another player would have been included in the deal.
Prior to the trade deadline, the Boston Celtics expressed interest in obtaining Anthony via a trade with the Knicks, according to league sources with knowledge of the situation.
It is unclear if there were any formal discussions between New York and Boston and if those discussions ever reached an advanced stage. But Boston was informed that Anthony had no desire to leave the Knicks via trade to play for the Celtics, sources say.
Cleveland makes the most sense because they are contending team and should be for as long as LeBron stays healthy. Two other possibilities are the Clippers and Celtics. Anthony owns a home in Los Angles and is close friends with All Star point guard Chris Paul. As for the Boston, the Knicks long time rivals have the assets that appeal to them. Celtics GM Danny Ainge has always been aggressive about adding a star and is intrigued by Anthony. For now, the Celtics are focused on Love, who signed an extension with the Cavs last summer.
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July 22, 2017 | 9:56 pm EDT Update
Jack Cooley must have made a good impression on the Kings during the recently completed Las Vegas Summer League. The former Notre Dame will sign a two-way contract with Sacramento, a league source confirmed to NBCSportsCalifornia.com’s James Ham.
Jared Sullinger has no problem using the F-word. Fat. Ask the out-of-work NBA player — the Phoenix Suns cut him in February — and the one-time Ohio State center from Northland speaks openly on the subject. I know, because I asked him. “You look like you’re down to, what, 240?” I asked, hoping not to have guessed embarrassingly high. “I wish,” he answered.
“My biggest was 320, when I was finishing my fourth year with Boston (2015-2016),” the 25-year-old offered. “Honestly, it was embarrassing.”
“I lost a year of basketball directly because of what I have done — my weight and my eating habits,” he said, explaining how his unwillingness to shed pounds led the Celtics to release him in 2016 and later contributed to the Toronto Raptors trading him to Phoenix on Feb. 23. The Suns cut him the next day.
Maybe an NBA franchise will notice Sullinger’s weight loss and show interest. He averaged 10.8 points and 7.5 rebounds in five NBA seasons. There is plenty of game left in him. Or maybe the next step is playing overseas. Either way, he does not sound worried. “Now that I have basketball and my health, I don’t give a damn about anything else,” he said.
July 22, 2017 | 7:31 pm EDT Update
The Cavs kept Irving’s request quiet. They wanted to patiently work on a deal without all the media frenzy happening right now. I also heard it was some players who began telling others — leading to the news coming out.