It’s only a matter of time now until it becomes a rea…

It’s only a matter of time now until it becomes a reality for the son of former NBA guard Greg Anthony. Friday afternoon, the Upper West Side native decided he would not return to North Carolina for his sophomore year, telling The Post he was going pro and signing with Jeff Schwartz of Excel Sports Management.

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“It’s really one of the best feelings you can have, knowing all your hard work is coming together to live your dream,” Anthony said in an exclusive phone interview. “It’s still a ways away, not knowing when the draft is going to be, but an opportunity to pretty much call myself a pro soon is surreal. It’s really one of the best feelings ever.”
Scouts and analysts are split on Cole Anthony, North Carolina’s stud freshman point guard, who has yet to announce his intentions to return to school or go pro. Some forecast that Anthony will fall into the low teens in the NBA draft, if he does forego his final three years of college eligibility. Others believe the son of former NBA point guard Greg Anthony, who will turn 20 on May 15, will be a top-five pick or possibly will fall to his hometown Knicks at No. 6. Projections are across the board for the Upper West Side native who has been in the public eye since starting as a freshman at Catholic school Archbishop Molloy in Queens. “I’ve gotten the complete spectrum,” former NBA point guard and ACC Network analyst Cory Alexander, who coached Anthony for one year as an assistant at powerhouse Oak Hill Academy, said in a phone interview. “Some people love him, and some people would not want him on their team for whatever reason.”
Two NBA scouts offered differing opinions. One scout said he sees Anthony as more of a scorer than a point guard and someone who needs the ball in his hands. ESPN draft analyst Fran Fraschilla had a similar viewpoint, raving about Anthony’s athleticism and star potential, but worrying about his inefficiency for a player drafted in the top five or six. “I just don’t think he wins you games,” the scout said.
After finishing his first season as a Tar Heel, Cole Anthony is understandably being asked about his future. In a personal statement, Anthony took to Instagram to give fans an answer. "A lot of people have been asking me if I am going to declare for the NBA Draft. Anyone who knows me understands that playing in the NBA has been a lifelong dream of mine, but given the pain that America and the world are experiencing at this time, I am going to refrain from making any announcements around that topic.”
Cole Anthony: “Lliving in New York City, the Coronavirus hits hard. My family and I know many people directly affected by the Coronavirus-many hospitalized. A few in critical condition and one who has died. New York City is experiencing the highest number of Coronavirus cases in the United States. So my biggest concern right now is trying to figure out how I can help during this crisis. We are all in this together! Stay safe."
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December 3, 2022 | 9:36 am EST Update

NBA exec on Al Horford extension: 'This is definitely a hometown discount, like Dirk Nowitzki or Tim Duncan'

The consensus around the league is that Horford, even at his advanced age, left money on the table to remain with the Celtics. “I think he could have got more,” the executive said. “This is definitely a hometown discount, it’s like Dirk (Nowitzki) or Tim Duncan (both signed team-friendly contracts late in their careers). But, look, the teams with money next year are mostly young teams. So maybe Horford was looking at the landscape and saw who had cap space and wound up saying, ‘I do not want to go to Houston, man.’ It is a win for both sides, really, but if he wanted to chase money, he could have gotten more.”
As far as Williams, executives have told Heavy Sports in recent weeks that a deal starting in the $18-20 million range, while obviously very high for a player averaging 8.8 points and 4.6 rebounds this season, could be enough to scare off the Celtics from matching an offer for Williams, a restricted free agent. “I don’t know that they would go into $20 million a year for Grant Williams,” the executive said. “I don’t know that anyone else would, either. But they have some cushion. If it winds up being $15 million a year for Grant, they can match that and still be in a position where they’re not adding to that (tax) burden.”
Jorge Sierra: LEBRON JAMES More points than Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant. More assists than Magic Johnson and Oscar Robertson. More steals than Allen Iverson and Karl Malone. More rebounds than two-time rebounding champion DeAndre Jordan. More blocks than Bill Walton.
Vaughn stepped in as the interim head coach on Nov. 1, inheriting a 2-5 mess. Since then he’s engendered players’ trust and commitment, earned the permanent job and changed the vibe inside the HSS Training Center halls and Barclays Center walls. Oh, and gone 11-6 in his first month (and a day) on the job. “They’re in the process of establishing that identity,” Wizards head coach Wes Unseld Jr. said of Vaughn, his former boss. “You’re seeing that on the defensive end. I don’t know how much is different, but a little bit more buy-in, a little bit more commitment. You can tell there’s more intent.
Vaughn’s age isn’t just visible in a beard flecked with gray. It showed up as a wiser coach during his 7-3 interim stint in 2020. And a more experienced one that ended Friday 9-4 since having the interim tag removed on Nov. 9. “In today’s NBA, [it’s important to have] the ability to communicate with guys on as small as things as what time do we want to leave, to big things as pick-and-roll coverage and lineups on the floor,” said Vaughn. “It’s OK to have that kind of communication. “I might’ve resisted that as a young coach, where I thought I had to prove to everyone that I knew every answer all the time and wasn’t vulnerable to ask someone a question and get an answer from a player. That’s changed.”

December 3, 2022 | 8:33 am EST Update
“To know that I’m in the conversation or about to get to a point that I’m breaking a record that he set for this franchise — and I’m not comparing myself to Magic with this franchise, what he did, sheesh. “Him, [James] Worthy, Kobe [Bryant], Shaq [O’Neal], those guys are synonymous with this franchise. But it’s just pretty cool, always, when I’m able to see my name with some of the greats that have played this game,” James told ESPN this week when asked about the accomplishment he was approaching.