NEW YORK — Carmelo Anthony is staying with the New York Knicks.
Anthony has decided to remain in New York, choosing the Knicks over a number of teams which could have given him a better chance for the championship he craves.
The All-Star forward met with Chicago, Houston, Dallas and the Lakers, but has informed the Knicks he will return, a person with knowledge of the details told The Associated Press on Saturday on condition of anonymity because no announcement was made.
The Knicks offered Anthony a maximum contract worth nearly $130 million over five years, about $35 million more than any of his other suitors under NBA rules, though it's unknown what the final terms of his deal will be.
Yahoo Sports and the Daily News of New York first reported Anthony's plans.
Anthony came to the Knicks in February 2011 after a trade with the Denver Nuggets. He led the NBA in scoring in 2012-13 and was second last year but is more interested in team success, so he spent the last two weeks considering other homes.
But the combination of the millions more the Knicks could offer and the chance to keep playing on basketball's biggest stage was too hard to pass up for Anthony, a New York native who spent months trying for a trade to his hometown just over three years ago.
He wanted the Big Apple then and still does now.
His decision came a day after LeBron James announced he was going to sign in Cleveland, leaving Anthony as the best free agent on the market.
The Knicks did not comment. An announcement is expected Sunday.
Not even the first playoff-less season of his 11-year career convinced Anthony to leave, though he may have seriously considered it given that his decision didn't come until the 12th day of free agency.
Instead, he's putting his faith in team President Phil Jackson and coach Derek Fisher, who will try to rebuild the Knicks after they went 37-45 last season.
Paul Pierce is on the move for the second straight summer, this time from Brooklyn to the Washington Wizards.
A person with knowledge of the deal tells The Associated Press that Pierce has agreed to a two-year contract with the Wizards. The deal is for the mid-level exception, which is about $5.3 million for next season, and includes a player option in the second year of the contract. The person requested anonymity because the Wizards have not officially announced the signing.
Pierce averaged a career-low 13.5 points last season in his first year with the Nets after 15 years with the Boston Celtics. But he will bring some valuable veteran leadership and playoff experience to a young and up-and-coming team. ESPN first reported the agreement.
The Chicago Bulls landed Los Angeles Lakers big man Pau Gasol on Saturday.
Gasol announced on his verified Twitter account that he reached agreement with the Bulls.
The Spaniard is one of the NBA's most offensively gifted and versatile big men, and he has long been one of Kobe Bryant's favorite teammates with the Lakers. Gasol spent the last seven seasons in Los Angeles, teaming with Bryant to win two championships and reach another NBA Finals.
The 7-foot Gasol is a four-time All-Star and averaged 17.4 points and 9.7 rebounds in 60 games last season with Los Angeles, and he brings some sorely needed offensive punch to the Bulls frontcourt.
Gordon Hayward is staying in Utah after all.
The Jazz matched Charlotte's four-year, $63 million offer for the restricted free agent.
The Jazz had until late today to match the Hornets' maximum offer sheet for the 6-foot-8 small forward.
Hayward averaged career highs of 16.2 points, 5.2 assists, 5.1 rebounds and 1.4 steals last season while leading the Jazz in scoring and minutes. He was the first Jazz player to average 16 points, five rebounds and five assists since Pete Maravich.