Carmelo Anthony has had an interesting offseason, to say the least, as he and the New York Knicks try to figure out his future.
The star forward is as productive as ever as a scorer, but the Knicks are probably not in a position to compete for a playoff spot this upcoming season.
Complicating matters is that Anthony has a full no-trade clause, and is - as of now - apparently only willing to waive it to be traded to the Houston Rockets.
All the uncertainty around Melo's future has clearly affected his standing in the league, as ESPN ranked him as the No. 64 player in the league in its annual ratings, one spot behind rookie Lonzo Ball, who has yet to play a game in the NBA.
Clearly, Melo was frustrated by that ranking, calling out ESPN for the disrespect on Twitter, as you can see below:
Anthony may have a point, as players like Ball, Robert Covington, Harrison Barnes and Danny Green are ranked ahead of him.
In an offseason full of sleights, from media members and his own organization, it'll be interesting to see how Melo responds when he takes the court this season.
In an interview earlier this offseason, as his conflict with former Knicks president Phil Jackson reached a head, Melo explained that he'd always be tied to New York, even if he eventually was traded from the Knicks:
“I’ll always be a part of this community, regardless of where I’m at,” he said in the video. “I will always come back here, I will always have business here, I will always have family here.
“Those things will never change, so I will always be tied to New York.”
For now, at least, it seems Melo will start the 2017-18 season as a member of the Knicks, for better or for worse.
However, the Portland Trail Blazers (and guards Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, in particular) are lobbying to bring Melo to the West Coast, but it remains to be seen if the two teams can work out a deal.
Even if they do work out a deal, it would be up to Melo to accept, as he has the full no-trade clause mentioned above.
As a 32-year-old last season, Melo showed why he's still one of the best pure scorers in the game, averaging 22.4 points, 5.9 rebounds and 2.9 assists over the span of 74 games. Now that he feels disrespected by ESPN, whatever team he plays for this year will be getting a very motivated 33-year-old.