But Anthony said that never happened. The Denver forward refuted a recent New York Post report that Anthony has had several conversations with Lee, an avid Knicks fan, about joining the team.
"Never. Inaccurate. False,'' Anthony said in an interview Wednesday with FanHouse following a charity event in which the Carmelo Anthony Foundation provided meals for a week for 400 Denver families in need.
With the Knicks coming to Denver next Tuesday and the Nuggets playing at New York on Dec. 12, 'tis the season for talk about Anthony eventually joining the Knicks to increase even more.
Anthony doesn't believe Tuesday's game will be anything that out of the ordinary. But he knows it won't be just another game when he heads to New York, a city he loves and the place many believe Anthony eventually will land either through a trade or free agency next summer.
"Now, I expect that to be a zoo,'' Anthony said. "I expect that to be. Because that's one of the biggest markets as far as media or anything goes. So all of the media outlets being in New York, and I come into town for that game.''
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Of course, there are some who wonder whether Anthony might still be with the Nuggets then. He has not signed a three-year, $64.47 million contract extension offer.
Because he can opt out of his contract and become a free agent next summer, the Nuggets could deal Anthony by the Feb. 24 trade deadline so as not to risk losing him for nothing. However, most observers believe it's unlikely any trade would be made until after Dec. 15, when free agents who signed last summer can be dealt and would increase the pool of players available.
With all this in mind, Anthony was asked if he owes it to Nuggets management to give an answer by the trade deadline on whether he might sign the extension, which would kick in for the 2012-13 season and eliminate his ability to opt out next summer. Anthony didn't directly answer but did shed a positive light for the Nuggets on his ongoing communication with president Josh Kroenke and executive vice president of basketball operations Masai Ujiri.
"I think as far as my situation goes or anything, I think Masai and Josh and myself, we have great communication,'' Anthony said. "The lines are open right now between us. If anything is happening, if anything is being said, we sit down and talk about it. So that's a good thing. Then I can be able to go to them or they come to me. Being that they're the leaders of this organization and we need to sit down and talk it out.
"What's going on in my head, they know. They know what's going on in my head. So, as far as any of that stuff goes, we're all on the same page.''
Anthony wouldn't say what is going on his head and Ujiri also wouldn't discuss that. But Ujiri did agree the lines of communication with Anthony are good.
"He's been a true professional,'' Ujiri said. "We'll keep taking things as it comes, and we'll see how it goes.''
As for the Knicks, Anthony did confirm a New York Post report that New Orleans guard Chris Paul gave a toast at the July 11 wedding of Anthony and MTV personality La La Vazquez that Paul, Anthony and New York forward Amar'e Stoudemire would one day be teammates similar to the Miami trio of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.
"It was at my wedding,'' Anthony said. "Everybody was having fun. The Miami Heat thing was the hot topic at that point in time. There were a lot of guys, a lot of players there, just laughing and joking about it. It is what it is. ... It wasn't set up. It wasn't staged or anything like that. It was just everybody was having a good time laughing and joking.''
Regardless, it was an offseason event that led many to believe Anthony was in no hurry to sign the extension that was offered in June. Five months later, he has yet to sign it.
"It's still there,'' Anthony said of the extension still being an option. "My options are open. That's where I want to leave it at.''
Anthony had told FanHouse last month that re-signing with the Nuggets still was an option. He reiterated that to reporters earlier this week, saying, "Sure, why not? I don't see why not."
Anthony did tell Yahoo Sports! after Denver's Oct. 27 season opener, "I feel it's a time for change.'' The quote was displayed on the ESPN scrawl and Sports Illustrated used the quote in writing "Carmelo Anthony erased any doubt that he wanted out of Denver.''
"I think it was just a miscommunication, a misinterpretation of everything that's just been going on throughout the summer up until this point,'' Anthony said of the quote. "The title, 'Time for change,' that didn't mean anything. It's so broad. That can mean a lot of things. ... Change is my options are open.''
A lot of folks around Denver are hoping change won't mean the eighth-year man with a career scoring average of 24.7 leaving the only team he ever has known.
While he was distributing food Wednesday, fans told Anthony they hope he will say. One chanted, "Don't Go, Melo.''
"It just goes to show their appreciation of what I do, not just on the court, but off the court as well,'' Anthony said. "Here in the community. I've been here, this is my eighth season. It's almost like home to me. So to walk around and hear people say, 'Don't go' and 'Stay here in Denver,' you hear that feeling, it feels good. But at that end of the day, I'm here right now.''
But for how long? Regardless of speculation that Anthony soon could be playing for the Knicks, Chicago, New Jersey or for anybody else, he insists it doesn't bother him.
"It's funny,'' he said. "Everybody has their own opinion about the situation. Everybody has an opinion what they want me to do. Where they want me to go. Whether it's to stay here or go somewhere else. So I just sit back and just look at it and read it and just laugh at it.''
Anthony, though, knows it would be risky to not sign the extension and opt out of the $18.52 million he is due next season to become a free agent. The current collective bargaining agreement expires June 30, 2011, and it's uncertain what then will happen with salaries.
Salaries could go down significantly. NBA commissioner David Stern wants to cut them by a third.
"When I say I keep my options open, obviously I know the risk that I'm taking,'' Anthony said. "Obviously, I know the pros and cons of not signing the extension right now.''
Anthony could have become a free agent last summer like James, Wade and Bosh, also taken in the 2003 draft. But while those three opted to sign a contract extension in the summer of 2006, making them free agents as early as 2010, Anthony chose not to follow their lead and signed for at least an additional year.
Anthony said in 2006 he didn't want to sign a shorter deal due to the risk of something happening and that his family discouraged him from not taking the maximum five-year, $79 million contract. He said he has no regrets.
"My situation is a totally different from theirs,'' said Anthony, referring to the Heat trio. "I don't base anything I do based on what anybody else does. I'm my own person. I have my own lane. And I do things the way I want to do it.''
Anthony also dismissed any possible comparisons with James, who received ample criticism for the way he bolted Cleveland last summer for Miami.
"Me and LeBron are different,'' Anthony said when the conversation turned to how James went to the Heat in search of a title ring. "I don't worry about that and what people say about me. And people are saying stuff about me as long as I've been in this league. Whatever I do is my decision for my family (which also includes son Kiyan, 4). I'm not worried about what somebody else's opinion is.''
For now, Anthony said it's "just happy times right now for everybody'' because George Karl is back coaching the Nuggets after missing the final 1 ½ months of last season due to a form of throat cancer. Although Denver entered Thursday's home game against the Lakers at 4-4, the Nuggets had played just three games at the Pepsi Center.
But Anthony isn't as happy as he was in July 2009, when he said he wanted "to stay (in Denver) long term.'' Anthony was asked what has changed in his mind since then. The Nuggets were then a month removed from advancing to the Western Conference finals before a 2009-10 season in which they were stunned by Utah in the first round with assistant Adrian Dantley having replaced Karl.
"A lot of things changed, man, at the end of a year and a half ago,'' said Anthony, not wanting to elaborate. "For me, on the court, off the court. A lot of things changed.''
Once again, Anthony is talking about change. What change might mean for the Nuggets remains to be seen.
Chris Tomasson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @christomasson