Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Knicks' Jackson Playing Risky Game with Anthony

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Knicks' Jackson Playing Risky Game with Anthony

Article excerpt

NEW YORK - Imagine you are James Dolan.

OK, I understand the uncomfortable feeling that just came over you. But still, imagine that you are on tour with your band, feeling pretty good. A nice set the night before, the coffee is place in front of you and you start picking up newspapers searching for band reviews and in each paper you spot a disturbing series of articles about the brewing face-off between Knicks president Phil Jackson and the star you worked so hard to bring to Madison Square Garden, Carmelo Anthony.

And you start to remember your promises on that day when you introduced Phil as the new savior, how you were no basketball expert and this was all in Phil's hands and you hope that at least if the star you gave up half the franchise to get and then have paid out the contract that Phil told you that you had to pay to keep Anthony, would bring back the pieces to remake the Knicks and keep those high-priced seats filled.

But you see a story from ESPN that the Cavs already turned down Jackson's idea of a Carmelo for Kevin Love deal. And then the New York Daily News reports that Jackson was open to sending Anthony to the Clippers and not bringing back any of the team's three stars. And you start to think that maybe you'd better get back to New York.

Trust in Phil only goes so far.

Jackson has run through three incarnations of rebuilds already and this latest one was a win-now affair. And now, just after the season hit its midpoint he is looking to break it down. Understandable, because the experiment hasn't worked and the Knicks have not looked anything close to a contender.

The solution for Jackson seems to be to try to prod Anthony to give up the no-trade clause that Jackson provided when Anthony was on a free agent recruiting tour. And despite his insistence that he wants to stay in New York, Anthony has at least hinted that he will listen.

But the Knicks know that he's not just going anywhere - if he agrees to go at all as Jackson has made it increasingly uncomfortable. …

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