The NBA is preparing for the storm that is free agency on July 1, the annual shifting of superteams and power in the league.
There's already been plenty of action leading up to it, though. The Los Angeles Lakers gave up on former No. 2 pick D'Angelo Russell in exchange for salary cap space, the Los Angeles Clippers traded Chris Paul to the Houston Rockets, and Phil Jackson is out as president of the New York Knicks.
That last bit of news - the Knicks and Jackson splitting up - could open the door for the next big domino to fall in the NBA. Carmelo Anthony's future with the Knicks has seemingly been in the air for years, and whispers are stronger than ever than he could end up in a different jersey this summer.
Anthony's representatives have engaged with the Knicks front office regarding a buyout of the remaining two years and $54 million on his contract, but the franchise has been reluctant to go down that avenue thus far. Their preference remains receiving some sort of compensation for Carmelo, not paying him for not playing basketball in New York.
The Knicks are in a tough spot, though, and no longer have someone leading their basketball operations. Jackson was adamant that Anthony and the Knicks would mutually benefit from splitting, and while being so upfront about it ultimately led to Phil's time in New York coming to an end, there was definitely truth to that notion.
Anthony, at 33 years old, isn't the elite in-his-prime player the franchise was hoping would save it when he arrived in 2011. The Knicks have missed the playoffs in each of the last four seasons and don't appear to be moving any closer to it, even as Kristaps Porzingis develops.
But what Anthony could be is the perfect third wheel on a superteam, and the leading candidate to land him has shifted from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Rockets, according to Stephen A. Smith of ESPN. Anthony and Paul are great friends, and Houston is still wheeling and dealing to round out its own superteam after acquiring CP3.
The Rockets are also trying to see what it would take to land the other superstar forward in trade rumors, Paul George. George would be an insane upgrade for Houston, but acquiring him would be difficult with suitors like the Boston Celtics and Lakers in the mix as well.
Anthony might be the best option for Houston, and Houston might be the best option for Anthony. Whether the Knicks agree to a buyout to end what's become a strained future together is the biggest question left for Carmelo.News Now - Sport News