Friday , Feb , 18 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Nets and Nuggets playing hardball over Carmelo Anthony?

Through his assistant, Mikhail Prokhorov apparently denied that the Nets have re-entered trade talks with the Nuggets for Carmelo Anthony.

"Mikhail has not changed his mind," the assistant wrote.When asked if that meant that New Jersey’s owner is not interested in continuing his team’s pursuit of Anthony, she replied as follows: What I said is what I said. Not what you said."

Reports surfaced on Wednesday and Thursday that the Nets were again engaged with Denver and the discussion was advancing.

Link

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: One minute Carmelo Anthony is on his way to the New Jersey Nets as part of a seven player blockbuster trade.

One minute later, the deal is off –and the Nets are maintaining their stance about not giving away the farm to the Denver Nuggets for Anthony.

What report to believe? Well, the truth is in the middle. On paper, a deal between the Nets and Nuggets makes sense.

Mikhail Prokhorov, also known as Russia’s richest man, needs to make headlines before his Nets bolt New Jersey and move into their new billion dollar Brooklyn digs.

Nothing would get the basketball world talking like the Nets acquiring and resigning Anthony, especially if they upstage the rival New York Knicks.

Meanwhile, the Nuggets know Anthony won’t sign an extension to stay in the Mile High City. They have to make a trade before the February 24th deadline.

If there’s no trade, the small forward will become a free agent at season’s end and head for New York. The Nuggets would get nothing back and become like the 2011 Cleveland Cavaliers and the Toronto Raptors post Chris Bosh.

In short, the Nuggets have to cut a trade. The Nets have the best assets.

Unfortunately, both teams know the other’s hand. And the Nuggets and Nets are determined to play hard ball with each other.

Perhaps a deal happens; perhaps not. These teams will have another conversation or two before the trade deadline passes.

Just don’t either side to admit it. 

–Oly Sandor.

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