Carmelo: Phil 'coming on board'

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Carmelo Anthony doesn't think Phil Jackson's presence with the New York Knicks will have an impact on his impending free agency.

"I don't think it'll have any effect on me, just as far as what I'm thinking or my decision or anything like that," Anthony told reporters after the team's shootaround in Boston on Wednesday morning. "Like I said, I haven't talked to Phil yet, just to get his insight on a lot of things -- what's his plan, what's his future plan -- because everything's in his hands now."

Anthony said the team told him earlier this week that Jackson would be joining its front office.

"I still don't have a lot of the details, all the details," Anthony said. "Have I heard? Yeah, I heard he will be coming on board. Not official yet."

A source who spoke directly to Knicks management Wednesday said that Anthony was told a deal with Jackson is close to be finalized, and when it is, Anthony will be given a chance to speak directly to him. 

The source also said that as of midinght "everything seems to be on track" but nothing has been signed yet and it could still be a few days before it is. 

A league source previously told ESPN The Magazine's Chris Broussard that Jackson and the Knicks are expected to finalize a deal that will give the legendary former coach control of the club's front office by the end of this week. An official announcement might not come until next week, the source said.

Meanwhile, the New York Daily News reported that Knicks owner James Dolan has asked Bill Bradley, a longtime friend and former teammate of Jackson's, to act as an intermediary in the team's talks with him.

Anthony said Wednesday that the Knicks will benefit from Jackson's presence. Jackson, 68, is expected to serve as president of basketball operations.

"You can always use Phil Jackson inside an organization, his philosophy, his mindset, his résumé, what he brings to a team, what he brings to an organization," Anthony said. "That goes without even saying, so we'll see how that plays out.

"You can't take for granted what he knows about the game of basketball, whether he's on the sideline or in the front office."

Jackson won 11 NBA titles as a coach and two as a Knicks forward.

"I'm sure he will try to his best to do what he has to do to try to build a championship team," Anthony said. "He knows how to put guys together, put a team together."

Anthony plans to opt out of the final year of his contract and test free agency this summer. He can sign a max contract worth $129 million over five years with the Knicks. With any other team, Anthony can get a deal worth four years and $96 million.

He has said his top priority is to re-sign with the Knicks, but he wants to hear the team's plans for building a championship contender around him before making a decision. He's also said he's open to signing a contract worth less than maximum money if it helps the team he signs with pursue other free agents.

As for Jackson, new NBA commissioner Adam Silver said he'd love to see him return to the league.

"I'm agnostic as to what team, but I would love to see Phil Jackson" back in the league, Silver said Wednesday after speaking to the Boston College Chief Executives' Club of Boston.

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