OPINION: Anthony's own words best source for Melo news
Chris Paul’s toast at Carmelo Anthony’s wedding last month made national headlines as he raised the possibility of joining forces with Melo someday in New York.
Another toast flew under the radar but might have been equally influential as Anthony ponders his long-term future in Denver.
Nuggets owner Stan Kroenke raised his glass and said a few words at the July 10 wedding. Given the fact that loyalty is one of Anthony’s most valued characteristics, the gesture certainly was appreciated.
Though the Nuggets are in the process of restructuring their front office, the changes are not playing as much of a factor in Anthony’s decision whether to sign a contract extension as some people may think.
“If you were Melo, would you recommit now to an organization facing so many questions and offering so few answers? Me neither” Denver Post columnist Dave Krieger wrote last week.
With all due respect to my former Rocky Mountain News colleague Krieger, the best person to speak about Anthony’s future is Carmelo himself.
Anthony has been in touch with Kroenke, coaches, teammates and other front-office executives throughout the summer. There’s an open line of communication to provide answers to any questions on the mind of Melo.
During his annual basketball camp Saturday, Anthony told Post beat writer Chris Dempsey that the departure of executives Rex Chapman and Mark Warkentien and the pending hire of a new general manager will have little impact on his decision.
“I think my decision is my decision,” he said. “I don’t think it’s based on who is in the front office or anything like that. I’m going to make my decision based on my feelings.”
Front-office changes are hardly unique in the NBA and it should be noted that the Nuggets were in the midst of a transition when Anthony signed his first contract extension with Denver. He agreed to a five-year deal on July 12, 2006 – a little more than two months into the search to replace Kiki Vandeweghe.
Anthony told Dempsey that the Nuggets have kept him informed regarding offseason moves in free agency and their front office. The open dialogue is another sign of mutual respect between the Nuggets and their three-time All-Star.
“It’s good to make me feel a part of what’s going on over there,” Anthony said. “In the past, I didn’t want to be a part of those decisions because it was just too much to focus on that … But now, it’s serious business.”
In the coming weeks and season, there will be multiple stories quoting multiple unnamed sources regarding Anthony’s future. For now, the most credible source is Carmelo.
After ESPN.com posted yet another speculative story Monday saying Anthony already has made up his mind to leave Denver, Melo weighed in on his Twitter account.
"Funny how people come up with there (sic) own analysis of a situation," he tweeted. "I tell you boy ... Unbelievable." Yes, Anthony is still leaving his options open, but he also reiterated his loyalty to Denver during a larger question-and-answer session with the media Saturday.
“I’m a Denver Nugget, man,” he said. “I’m here, I’m with the Nuggets.”
We can all raise a glass to that.
Aaron Lopez has covered the Nuggets since 1994, first for the Associated Press and then the Rocky Mountain News. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org