Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov said before Wednesday night's home game against Utah he has told his team to end discussions with Denver about trading for the star forward.
Anthony never wanted to go to New Jersey. A source told FanHouse that on Dec. 20, and nothing ever changed.
Anthony, whose preference is believed to be to go to New York, made his feelings clear last weekend when he said he had no interest in meeting with the Nets, who had requested and received permission to talk with the forward in an attempt to get Anthony to agree to sign an extension with New Jersey if he were to be traded there.
"I'm not happy with the way ... this deal has gone until now," Prokhorov told reporters "It has taken too long. It has been played out in public and it certainly has taken a toll on the players, and I believe that it has cost us several games. I think management did a great job, but there comes a time when the price is simply too expensive. I'm instructing our team to walk away from the deal.
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"And the meeting that our management was supposed to have in Denver with Carmelo (Thursday) is hereby canceled."
Prokhorov said the Nets, who were granted permission Monday to speak with Anthony, never got a "straightforward answer" on a meeting taking place.
"I never met with Carmelo and I never spoke to him," Prokhorov said. "Maybe he sent me e-mail, but really I don't use computers."
Anthony had first said last Saturday he had no interest in meeting with the Nets.
"What am I going to meet with (Prokhorov) for?'' Anthony said.
Nuggets coach George Karl expressed no surprise before Wednesday's game against Oklahoma City at the Pepsi Center about Prokhorov saying the possible deal was dead.
"I'm not surprised,'' Karl said. "I think I've been the one guy that's been kind of hinting to all you that this is a lot further away from happening than you all think... My billionaire friend from Russia (Prokhorov) has kind of thrown another curve ball or knuckleball into the process... If it's a ploy, a negotiation, all that's for the guys upstairs to figure out.''
Nuggets vice president of basketball operations Masai Ujiri wouldn't address specifics with reporters about a possible deal with the Nets but said he has talked "with plenty of teams.'' He said he has no ill will toward New Jersey for Wednesday's announcement by Prokhorov.
Speaking last Saturday, Anthony had indicated no interest in the Nets.
"I don't know where all this Nets stuff came from, man,'' Anthony said. "Once the Nets went out there and acquired those five picks (in the first round over the next two years), everybody just put everything together.''
Anthony on Sunday reiterated his thoughts on the Nets.
"I don't want to talk to nobody,'' Anthony said when asked about the possibility of meeting with New Jersey. "I let the front office handle that type of stuff. It ain't my job to be talking to New Jersey, New York, the Lakers, Dallas, no one. That's not my job to do.''
Anthony did not speak to the media after practice Tuesday, after Wednesday's shootaround or before Wednesday's game.
It's believed Anthony's preference is to be dealt to New York by the Feb. 24 trade deadline, although Chicago also still could be a possibility. Anthony is on the trading block due to his unwillingness to sign a three-year, $64.47 million contract extension with Denver and because he can opt out of his contract and become a free agent this summer.
Anthony has not ruled out re-signing with Denver at some point. However, no doubt the Nuggets will turn their attention toward a possible trade with the Knicks.
Karl was asked if New Jersey being out of the running at least eliminates one distraction.
""You got to be kidding me,'' Karl said. "It's going to be a huge story until there's a conclusion, until there's a final chapter written on it. I don't know what that is. Is the final chapter he signs here? Is the final chapter he's traded? (Is it) we play out the year for him? Whatever the final chapter is.''
New Jersey has been mentioned as a possible destination for Anthony since last September and there were reports last week a deal was close that also would involve Detroit and Anthony would go to the Nets with teammate Chauncey Billups. The Nuggets were willing to trade Billups because they have not wanted to pick up the $14.2 million option on his contract for next season, and have been leaning toward buying him out for $3.7 million shortly after this season. That's the most likely scenario if he finishes the season with Denver.
"Chauncey, he's a human being,'' Karl said of being glad Billups won't be traded for now. "I know he loves Denver and wants to be part of Denver. I'm sure if that's the conclusion (that Billups isn't traded), he'd be very happy. As a coach, in knowing Chauncey's leadership and maturity, he usually helps me a lot. So I would like to have him next to me.''
As for Anthony, he'll be next to Karl at least for awhile. He never had any interest in going to the Nets.
Chris Tomasson can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @christomasson