Melo: I didn't talk to Noah about Chicago

March, 7, 2014
Mar 7
11:40
PM ET
NEW YORK -- Carmelo Anthony denies having had a conversation with Joakim Noah during All-Star Weekend that's been characterized as an attempt by Noah to recruit Anthony to the Chicago Bulls.

"No, not at all," Anthony said after the Knicks' win over the Utah Jazz on Friday. "I can't have that conversation."

[+] EnlargeCarmelo Anthony
Jim O'Connor/USA TODAY SportsCarmelo Anthony scored 29 points against the Jazz despite playing with a cold.
The reality, though, is that conversations like the reported chat between Anthony and Noah happen all the time. If the conversation between Noah and Anthony actually took place, Anthony would likely be reluctant to admit it for two reasons:

Firstly, he currently plays for the Knicks.

Secondly, NBA rules prohibit players from recruiting their peers while they are under contract.

ESPN's Chris Broussard reported Thursday that Noah talked to Anthony over All-Star Weekend and told him, "Look, you could go to Los Angeles, but … if you want to win a ring, come to Chicago."

Anthony didn't offer any guarantees, Broussard reported.

But Anthony did reportedly say that he admires how hard Noah and the Bulls play and how hungry they are. Anthony also added that Derrick Rose is his son's favorite player. Read into that what you will.

For what it's worth, Anthony said Friday that he expects to hear stories like this every day for the foreseeable future as he approaches free agency this summer.

"Every day it’s a story. Every day it’s going to be a new story. I have no information about that," Anthony said after scoring 29 points against Utah. "I don’t know how that story got out there, who started that story. I don’t know. I really don’t know what to say about it."

Chicago is one of the most logical destinations for Anthony if he chooses to leave New York this summer. The Bulls would have to cut a significant amount from their payroll to have enough salary-cap space to afford Anthony, though. They could also land Anthony in a sign-and-trade involving Carlos Boozer's expiring contract.

To create enough cap space to sign Anthony to anything close to a max contract, the Bulls would have to amnesty Boozer, then trade either Taj Gibson or Noah to a team that could absorb the salary.

Anthony has said his first priority is to re-sign with the Knicks, who can offer him a max contract for one year longer and $33 million more than any other team.

But Anthony has also said he'd be willing to take less money from the Knicks or another team if it meant helping them attract other free agents.

You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Carmelo Anthony
PTS AST STL MIN
27.4 3.1 1.2 38.7
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsC. Anthony 8.1
AssistsP. Prigioni 3.5
StealsI. Shumpert 1.2
BlocksA. Bargnani 1.2