Thursday , Jan , 20 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Are the Nets really out of the Carmelo Anthony sweepstakes?

Mikhail Prokhorov, owner of the Nets, announced at a Wednesday press conference that his team is ending negotiations on a trade to acquire Carmelo Anthony.

"It’s been too long and too expensive," he said about the chase for Anthony. When asked if this was his final decision, he responded, "For sure." "It’s my own decision," Prokhorov said. "(The Nuggets) had a very good proposal. They probably did their best to protect their interests."


HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: The New Jersey Nets are out, but for how long?

Today, New Jersey Nets owner Mikhael Prokhorov announced he was pulling his team from the Carmelo Anthony sweepstakes because negotiations with the Denver Nuggets were too costly and expensive.
Prokhorov may be telling the public he’s out; however, the Nets still are in the running for Anthony.

This is a ploy. For months, Denver and Anthony have held all the cards. They’ve had leverage. They’ve dictated terms.

Prokhorov, who is Russia’s richest man, is attempting to take back power. The Nets easily have the best assets and resources to satisfy the Nuggets and Anthony, but aren’t willing to meet the asking price of six players and multiple first round draft picks.

The Nets knows this. The Nuggets know this. And Anthony is aware of this.

By announcing the Nets are out, Prokhorov is daring the Nuggets and Anthony to find a better deal. Something they won’t be able to do.

Of course, Anthony can opt-out of his contract and become a free agent July 1st. But the NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement also expires July 1st, and the new agreement will take millions of dollars out his pockets.

And there’s no guarantee the New York Knicks, Anthony’s preferred destination, will trade for or sign the All-Star.

So Prokhorov’s announcement is a calculated dare. This Melo-drama isn’t over. The Nets are far from out.

–Oly Sandor.

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