They’re both star players putting up great numbers on teams without much of a shot at real contention. But Butler is still young, where as Anthony’s championship clock is ticking down quickly.
With trade rumors swirling around both players, a possible solution has emerged via Jimmy Butler: they could join forces in Chicago.
The conversation started because of a phone call the Bulls star made to Anthony a few days ago. He said it wasn’t a recruiting call, but went on to say he is more than willing to help the front office add the star forward by making him feel welcome in Chicago.
That is half the battle,’’ Butler said, when discussing making a player from another team feel welcomed. “And I could still do that. I think everybody knows what Carmelo can bring to a team. The dude is a helluva player.
“But I think that we have some things that we’ve got to worry about here first in the next few weeks [leading into the trade deadline], before we go down that road.”
Anthony almost came to Chicago during his last free agency period in 2014, but ultimately settled on staying in New York, the team that was able to pay him an extra $50 million.
The Bulls have the pieces to make a trade for the nine-time All-Star, but there are no indications of whether Anthony would be willing to waive his no-trade clause, or if the teams have even discussed it.
Butler noted that he wants to use his friendship with the former Syracuse star to attract him to Chicago, but acknowledged that, at the end of the day, it is up to the front office, according to the Chicago Sun Times.
You can talk to [Anthony] and tell him all this, all that, but as far as a trade and all that stuff goes, that’s for the front office because there’s only so much say [the players] can have in a deal like that,’’ Butler said. “There’s not too much I can do in that aspect.
“But I will say I learned a lot about [Anthony] over the whole Olympic experience [last summer], and we’ve kept in touch. I’m very grateful for the friendship we’ve built, and it will continue to grow”
If there is no trade to be had, Anthony has the option to become a free agent after next season and perhaps Butler’s influence could attract him to Chicago then.