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Sources: Melo still counting on deal to Rockets

From ESPN - July 15, 2017

As New York Knicks president Steve Mills and general manager Scott Perry pursue a meeting with Carmelo Anthony in the coming days, league sources tell ESPN that team officials will find a 10-time All-Star player counting on the franchise to carry out its previously agreed upon mandate to trade Anthony to the Houston Rockets.

Whatever stance a post-Phil Jackson front office is taking now, Anthony, 33, has continued with an expectation that the Knicks will soon resume talks to honor the franchise's longstanding goal to rebuild without Anthony, league sources said.

Anthony has been willing to waive his no-trade clause for Houston and Cleveland, but in recent weeks he has begun to prioritize a trade to the Rockets to join Chris Paul and James Harden over the Cavaliers and LeBron James, league sources said.

With Perry's hiring from Sacramento and the promotion of Steve Mills to president, the Knicks have paused those trade discussions, in part, New York's been unhappy with the recent proposed returns on an Anthony deal, league sources said.

As Perry starts to shape the front office and impact policy, another realization has washed over the organization, too -- that the months of organizational harping on Anthony, driven largely by deposed president of basketball operations Phil Jackson, has dramatically devalued Anthony's trade value. Mills and Perry are evaluating whether there's a window of time worth trying to rebuild Anthony's standing around the NBA, as opposed to trading him with it at an all-time low, league sources said.

The Knicks realize the odds are long of convincing Anthony to simply turn back on trades talks and accept a return to New York, especially given how aggressively Jackson had pushed to run Anthony out of town. If it was Jackson primarily responsible for going to great lengths to publicly shame and discredit Anthony, it was not only Jackson within the franchise that Anthony and his camp knows played a part in the campaign.

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