Anthony informed the Chicago Bulls and Houston Rockets that they were out of the running for his services early Saturday morning. The Los Angeles Lakers were told they were no longer a potential landing spot on Friday afternoon.
The 30-year-old is expected to sign a max contract worth $129 million over the next five seasons, which is $30 million more than any other team could offer him. Anthony last week took a country-wide trip to meet with the Knicks, Bulls, Rockets, Lakers, and Dallas Mavericks. It was reported that the Lakers, Rockets, and Mavericks had offered him a max contract at four years and $96 million.
Numerous reports stated that Anthony last weekend was “torn” between the Lakers, Bulls, and Knicks, but as the days past he narrowed down his choice to between Chicago and New York. Although the Bulls could not offer him a lucrative contract, it was perceived that the team provided him the best chance to win a championship in the immediate future with a roster that includes former league MVP Derrick Rose and last season’s Defensive Player of the Year in Joakim Noah, and a proven head coach in Tom Thibodeau.
After Los Angeles was ruled out of contention for Anthony, they moved quickly by making a slew transactions on Friday as they acquired Jeremy Lin and a future first-round pick from the Houston Rockets, and re-signed both Jordan Hill (tw0-years, $18 million) and Nick Young (four-years, $21.5 million).
The Bulls have also begun to look at other options as reports late Friday evening stated that the team is working out a contract with former Lakers big man Pau Gasol and are looking to gauge the interest of Dwayne Wade, who in the 2010 free agency period had considered joining his hometown team. Finally, the Rockets have begun negotiating a deal with Trevor Ariza to potentially replace Chandler Parsons, but team may match the three-year, $45 million offer sheet he signed with the Mavericks earlier in the week.
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