- Associated Press - Monday, January 10, 2011

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - The Nets are closing in on a deal to bring Carmelo Anthony to New Jersey.

Talks on a three-team trade with the Denver Nuggets and Detroit Pistons continued Monday, a person with knowledge of the discussions told The Associated Press.

The trade would reunite Chauncey Billups and Richard Hamilton in New Jersey along with Anthony, the person said on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to publicly discuss the talks.

The three teams negotiated over the weekend and the source said the deal was “advancing.”

However, there are potential roadblocks.

The deal would fall apart if Anthony refused to sign a three-year, $65 million contract extension with the Nets. Billups also has said he would be reluctant to leave Denver.

Anthony refused to discuss a potential deal before the Nuggets played New Orleans in Denver on Sunday night. He said afterward he didn’t think a 96-87 loss was his last game in a Nuggets uniform.

“Uh-uh, not at all,” he said, repeating the phrase “not at all” four times.

Asked if that was an indication he wouldn’t sign the extension so the trade with the Nets could be consummated, Anthony demurred, saying: “I haven’t heard anything. Only, that it’s just been speculation as of right now.”

Anthony noted that team executive Josh Kroenke and general manager Masai Ujiri “are not even here, so I don’t see that happening.”

In what time frame was he referring to?

“I’m just saying I don’t see it happening right now,” Anthony said.

This week sometime?

“No.”

The Nets were close to acquiring Anthony during the preseason, but a four-team deal that included Utah and Charlotte fell through. Talks progressed recently with the inclusion of Detroit.

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