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Former Syracuse star Carmelo Anthony takes $27.9 million option for 2018-19

Despite career-lows in year one with the Thunder, Melo is back for another round (because that’s a lot of money).

NBA: Playoffs-Oklahoma City Thunder at Utah Jazz Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

Syracuse Orange fans that have been paying attention to the latest on Carmelo Anthony probably know already that he’s opted into the final year of his contract, which will pay him $27.9 million.

Despite career-lows across the board as a member of the Oklahoma City Thunder this past season, the decision was a no-brainer for the player. Melo isn’t a fit, with or without Paul George. But there’s no way he’s commanding nearly $28 million on the open market this summer. He absolutely had to take the money, whether he’s traded or not later on, or sees his minutes reduced with OKC next year.

We spoke about Melo’s fit in today’s NBA on a recent podcast, and the outlook isn’t as dire as this past year would indicate. However, the best parts of Melo’s game (playing in the paint) aren’t translating as well anymore. If he’s not a better perimeter shooter and at least a slightly below average defender, then it’s probably a bit more concerning.

More of your Syracuse-related links below:

Thunder’s Anthony to Opt In, Take $28 Million (Sports Illustrated)

The 34-year-old Anthony had been the headliner his entire career — he’s 19th in NBA history with 25,417 points — but he was more of a catch-and-shoot scorer last season instead of the isolation specialist he had always been. He averaged 16.2 points per game, but struggled at times in his new role.

Big Ten TV revenue distribution reaches an insane $51 million per school (Awful Announcing)

The Big Ten is in a league of their own with the SEC, which managed to lead all conferences in distributing $40 million to schools in 2017. The other power five conferences are further behind and while the coming ACC Network should make that conference a little more competitive on the revenue front, it’ll likely still be far behind the Big Ten.

Ex-Syracuse basketball player B.J. Johnson to play in NBA summer league with Charlotte (

After the 2015 season, Johnson transferred to LaSalle University in Phiadelphia. He sat out the 2015-16 and then became a full-time starter for the Explorers. This past season Johnson averaged 20.7 points and 8.3 rebounds. He connected on 35.9 percent of his 3-point attempts.

The NCAA president got a nearly $500,000 raise (SB Nation)

An NCAA spokeswoman pointed out to the paper that an NCAA committee made up of college presidents sets the compensation figures for executives in the national office. That’s a key point! The office Emmert heads up in Indianapolis has some power, but all of its authority comes from NCAA schools. The people who serve on the most important NCAA committees all come from schools (or from conferences, which represent schools).

Siena may land Syracuse grad transfer Braedon Bayer (Twitter)

Tyler Lydon healthy, hosting Pine Plains camp this week (Poughkeepsie Journal)

Sam Presti comments on Jermai Grant’s future with the Thunder (247Sports)

Heat may be without Dion Waiters to start training camp (Hot Hot Hoops)