While the news was expected — and even previously reported — Carmelo Anthony made his return to the Knicks official on Sunday.
Anthony confirmed earlier media reports via a statement on his website.
“A few years ago I dreamed of coming back to New York City, the place of my birth, and on February 23, 2011 that became a reality. This organization has supported me and in return, I want to stay and build here with this city and my team. At this pivotal juncture in my career, I owed it to myself and my family to explore all of the options available to me. Through it all, my heart never wavered.
“During this journey I met with some quality organizations who have amazing talent and leadership. I thank them for their consideration, belief in my talent, and opportunity to imagine the possibilities.
“I will always remember this chapter in my life. In the end, I am a New York Knick at heart. I am looking forward to continue my career in Orange & Blue and to work with [Knicks president] Phil Jackson, a champion who builds championship teams. Madison Square Garden is the mecca of basketball and I am surrounded by the greatest fans in the world.”
The Knicks forward had visited the Bulls, Mavericks, Rockets and Lakers last week as he explored free agency for the first time in his career. The Lakers and Bulls emerged as the favorites though he never seemed entirely invested in leaving New York.
He reportedly will return for the maximum of five years and a little over $120 million. The Knicks had the opportunity to offer almost $30 million more total than any other team since they held his “Bird rights.”
The Knicks will be just north of $80 million in salary next season with Anthony. The luxury tax threshold kicks in at $76.8 million this upcoming season. The team will not be able to sign any other contracts outside of minimum-level deals.
Anthony averaged 27.4 points and a career-high 8.1 rebounds per game last season one year after taking the NBA scoring title with 28.7 points per game in 2012-13.
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