The Chicago Bulls spent Tuesday courting unrestricted free agent Carmelo Anthony, and brought out just about everyone in the organization to help with their pitch.
According to sources close to the situation, the Bulls started their meeting with Anthony by giving him a tour of the United Center and then moved over to their new practice facility.
Later, the Bulls’ brass made a pitch centered around the fact that a core of Anthony, Joakim Noah, Derrick Rose and Taj Gibson – with Tom Thibodeau coaching – would be able to contend right away in the depleted Eastern Conference.
While Rose had went on the record saying that he wasn’t going recruit Anthony to Chicago, he was very involved in the team’s courtship of the superstar free agent, according to sources close to the situation. While at the United Center, sources say that Rose went through a private workout to show Anthony that he’s healthy and ready to compete at a high level next season.
After meeting and discussing the team’s pitch, the group went to dinner at the Peninsula Hotel in downtown Chicago. Anthony, Noah, Gibson, Thibodeau, Jerry Reinsdorf, Gar Forman and Scottie Pippen were all in attendance at the dinner, according to sources. (Note: Rose wasn’t at the dinner, as previously reported. He left the group earlier in the day, but did interact with Anthony at the arena before and after his workout).
The Bulls left the meeting and dinner feeling very confident that Anthony is seriously considering signing with Chicago, according to sources close to the situation.
Anthony will fly to Houston tonight. He will meet with the Houston Rockets and Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday, and then meet with the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday.
For all of the latest NBA news and rumors related to free agency, be sure to check out Basketball Insiders’ free agency diary.
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