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Berger: Would Prokhorov Gamble On 'Melo Without Guarantee? No Way!


Mikhail Prokhorov is a risk-taker.  You don't assemble a fortune of 13, 18 or 25 billion dollars without taking a lot of them, but would he take a huge risk on the Nets' future by bringing Carmelo Anthony to New Jersey without an extension?  Ken Berger writes that he might, but it would be over the strenous objections of his front office and his head coach.

"One person who has been in contact with Nets officials in the past two days said he could envision Prokhorov authorizing such a deal if Anthony balks at extending his contract," Berger writes. "But it is believed that GM Billy King and coach Avery Johnson would be staunchly opposed to getting Anthony on a rental basis, with no guarantee that he'd stay beyond this season."

Then, not long after he repeated the comment on WFAN Saturday afternoon, Berger tweeted, "Mentioned on WFAN there are those in league who believe would do Melo deal w/o extension. 'No way,' source just told me."  Later, Berger added, "Renting Melo is 'the opposite of what ownership wants,' the source said."

In updating the status of the trade talks, Berger says the final outline of the deal has yet to be set and that the logistics of moving all the pieces around the country makes it unlikely that everything could be done by Tuesday.  He does write that the Nuggets are looking elsewhere for a way to dump Al Harrington and that seldom-used Piston forward DaJuan Summers is back in the mix.

Meanwhile, two Daily News writers handicapped the Nets chances of getting Anthony.  Stefan Bondy believes it's matter of not "if" but "when" while Mitch Lawrence reports Prokhorov should be prepared to hear Anthony say he wants to play for the Knicks.