NBA Notes: Carmelo to reconsider free agency?

NBA Notes: Carmelo to reconsider free agency?
May 30, 2014, 4:15 pm
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Carmelo Anthony has long said he'll opt out this summer. Could Phil Jackson change his mind? (USA Today Images)

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Phil Jackson lost out on his preferred coach, but he's working hard on keeping his star player.

The New York Knicks president said Friday he has talked to Carmelo Anthony about postponing free agency, and the All-Star forward responded that he'll think about it.

"I told him it might be a good idea to hang in here and see what it's like for a year, and go out the next year," Jackson said.

Anthony can opt out of the final year of his contract, which would pay him $23.3 million, and has repeatedly said that was his plan. But Jackson said there are financial benefits to Anthony waiting, for both sides, and told him that during a dinner about a month ago.

"He opened the door and I stuck my foot in it and said this is what we can do," Jackson said to the team's beat writers (see full story).

Pacers: Bird tells Stephenson to cut it out
MIAMI -- Lance Stephenson's ear-blowing antics are over.

That was the order the Indiana guard got from Pacers president Larry Bird, who took issue with Stephenson's antics in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Miami Heat.

Stephenson was caught by television cameras blowing into the ear of Heat star LeBron James. That led to a conversation between Stephenson and Bird.

"He said, `Don't do it again,'" Stephenson said Friday, recalling his talk with Bird. "So I'm not going to do it again."

Stephenson's non-play-related words and stunts have largely become the story of the East finals, starting from when he talked about the health of Dwayne Wade's knees before the series. In Game 5, not only did he blow into James' ear, but also walked into a Heat huddle while Miami coach Erik Spoelstra was talking things over with a couple players (see full story).

Cavaliers: Gentry meets with team over vacant coaching gig
CLEVELAND -- The Cavaliers are spending their second day with a Clippers assistant, interviewing Alvin Gentry to be their head coach.

Gentry is the third known candidate to interview with the Cavs this week. They met with Chicago assistant Adrian Griffin on Tuesday, and the Cavs interviewed Clippers assistant Tyronn Lue on Thursday. Both Griffin and Lue are highly regarded but lack NBA head-coaching experience.

Cleveland will meet with former Memphis coach Lionel Hollins on Saturday.

Gentry has an extensive head coaching resume. He went 335-370 during stints with Miami, the Clippers, Detroit and Phoenix. The 59-year-old Gentry worked for the Suns with new Cavaliers general manager David Griffin.

The Cavs fired Mike Brown earlier this month after they finished 33-49 and missed the playoffs. Griffin is being thorough in his search, which is expected to carry into next week (see full story).


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