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NBA notes: Anthony says he won't ask for trade

  • Article by: ASSOCIATED PRESS
  • February 14, 2014 - 9:59 PM

Carmelo Anthony said Friday he knows “for a fact” the Knicks won’t trade him, and said he would be open to staying in New York for less than a maximum contract.

Anthony has said he plans to become a free agent this summer. The NBA’s trade deadline is Thursday, but Anthony ruled out any chance the Knicks would move him to avoid the possibility they could lose him for nothing in July.

“There’s two things: I know for a fact I’m not being traded and I’m not going in there and saying I want to be traded,” Anthony said at the NBA’s All-Star weekend.

New York can pay him around $30 million more than any team, but Anthony said he wouldn’t insist on making the Knicks do it.

““As far as the money goes, that’s not my concern,” he said. “My concern is being able to compete on a high level, at a championship level coming at this last stretch of my career.”

The Knicks aren’t doing it now. They are 20-32, one of the league’s biggest disappointments.

Skills, and swagger

Damian Lillard didn’t enter all three NBA All-Star skills competitions just for the fun of it.

“If I didn’t think I had a chance to win all of them, I wouldn’t put my name in them,” Lillard said. “But I really feel strong about the three-point shootout.”

The Portland Trail Blazers guard is the reigning champion of the skills competition, which will be Saturday night, along with the three-point shooting contest and the dunk contest. This year, though, Lillard sees the tandem of the Phoenix’s Suns’ Goran Dragic and Oklahoma City’s Reggie Jackson as potential favorites in the skills competition.

If Lillard had to pick a favorite other than himself to win the three-point shooting contest, he said it would be Golden State’s Stephen Curry. who’s hitting 41.5 percent from beyond the arc.

Lillard expects his Western Conference team that includes Golden State’s Harrison Barnes and Sacramento’s Ben McLemore to come out on top in the East vs. West dunk contest.

© 2014 Star Tribune