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It seems Carmelo Anthony's decision is down to the final three teams.

Anthony will choose between the Lakers, Bulls and Knicks, according to reporter Frank Isola (New York Daily News, July 7). Melo is still undecided about where he will land, but a decision is expected later this week (Spears, July 7).

Anthony recently visited Houston and Dallas, but those teams didn't make his shortlist, according to the report.

The Knicks are reportedly willing to offer him a max contract (TKB, July 3).

It's not a big surprise to see the Knicks prepared to play ball with an offer of a maximum contract. Phil Jackson has (quietly) maintained all along that if a maximum contract is truly what Anthony wants, that's what he'll get.

Of course, it would be ideal for the superstar to take even somewhat of a pay cut, enough so the Knicks can use such space to help them target another quality player or two in the future.

Having said that, there aren't too many players of the forward's caliber in the league right now. The Knicks currently employ one of the best, and if he's able to buy into Jackson's vision for success, Anthony is obviously a great starting point for a team to build a championship caliber team around.

How long such a process would ultimately be remains to be seen. With the Knicks, the Big Apple would be Anthony's oyster. In Chicago, he may have to compete with Derrick Rose as the two aim to share the city's bright lights. In Los Angeles, Anthony may bask in the Hollywood limelight, but his window for a championship would seemingly only last two years (the remaining time on Kobe Bryant's contract).

If he can remain patient in the interim, Anthony would receive it all in New York. His own team. The bright lights. The fame. The fortune. Recognition as the team's true shining star. Perhaps a championship would follow if he enlists his trust in Jackson as well.

Tags: Knicks , Andrew Vazzano
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