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Carmelo Anthony expects a max-deal extension from Denver, but may not sign it

Image (1) Anthony_game-thumb-250x356-9688.jpg for post 1588

Carmelo Anthony was in Los Angeles Sunday night to see Ray Allen walk on water, but he can’t go anywhere now without being asked about his future.

He has one more year on his current deal, paying him $17.1 million next year, followed by a player-option for the year after that. Denver can offer him a max-deal, three-year extension this summer and the Nuggets are expected to start talks soon with Anthony’s agent, Leon Rose, he told the Denver Post.

“Well see what happens. I think my agent (Leon Rose) is going to talk to them in a week or so and see what’s happening, and if there’s something on the table then we’ll go to the table and see what’s the best situation for me.”

But after an earlier-than-expected playoff exit this year, Anthony told FanHouse he doesn’t have to sign this summer, he could hold off in an effort to keep the pressure on Denver to improve the team.

“Yeah,’' Anthony, who attended Game 2 of the NBA Finals between the Lakers and Boston at the Staples Center, said of the possibility he might wait on signing a possible extension into next season or after it. “I’m not going to rush into anything. ... That’s always an option. ... I definitely don’t have to do it this summer.’'

But he will sign this summer if he’s smart.

Any deals signed this summer are under the current Collective Bargaining Agreement. Any ones signed next summer (ones after July 1, 2011) would be under a new, yet-to-be-negotiated CBA. It’s safe to assume that whenever that CBA is put in place (likely after a protracted lockout), it will not be as player-friendly as the current one.

Bottom line, sign this year or make less money in the future.