Donnie might have relayed a message to Melo, through Leon Rose... convincing Melo that:
The recent Walsh-Rose meeting in New York might have been what all the Knicks needed to win this Melo sweepstakes. Hear me now.
1.) it's no use to sign extension because all current contracts will be rolled back anyway.
2.) the Nets would be left with Lopez and him and scrubs... how could that be better than the current Nuggets, if winning ships if his #1 priority?
3.) In addition, compared to the Knicks, they wouldn't have to give up ANYthing if he actually signs with them in summer, meaning they will still have Chandler, Gallo, Fields and all their draft picks and pieces they would otherwise have to give up if they trade for him. The Knicks can convince Melo those guys are the perfect role players around him and Amare... or perhaps they are sayin things like, if Chandler keeps playing great, they can package Felton (who's also playing great) and Chandler to Hornets, frightened to lose their own superstar for nothing, for CP3 on draft night, and when Melo signs, they instantly have their Dream Big 3: Amare, Melo, and CP3. Donnie: "this is what the Celtics did!"
4.) And bullcrap like "you live life once, this is your ONLY time in your lifetime to join the Knicks..."
So, the Knicks plan is to make sure this message gets to Melo, and make sure he takes it seriously... because this is the Knicks' only way and most effective plan to get him. All they need is for Melo to wink back at them, "it's done"... through Rose. So, the Knicks have been layin low easy, KNOWING EXACTLY Melo will sign with them in summer while Nets are busting their asses to get the deal done for nothing... When folks are wondering why the Knicks are not doing anything, the Knicks realize they better "pretend" they are doing something so this whole tampering thing will not be investigated in the future. So, they "tried to contact Memphis involving Mayo to get a 3 way deal done"... so the world does not get suspicious, "if you want Melo so bad, why are you not looking like it? Then boom, Melo signs with them in summer, then people go, "hmmm... something's fishy". So it's better to look like you're doing something... when they probably hoped Memphis rejected the deal or Denver refused Mayo, which the latter did.
If Melo believes this (mainly the Chandler, Fields, Felton as great role players/ easily flip them for CP3 on draft night part), then the Knicks have won the battle: Melo will not agree to sign for extension so the Nets say no deal, the Knicks will no longer offer Chandler or anyone citing they "like their current team and not want to break them up" when the real reason is they have an under the table agreement with Melo that he will sign with them in the summer, while our young green inexperienced JKroenke and Ujiri are baffled why even the Knicks withdraw their offer, and we're done for. If this scenario happens, then the ONLY way is to turn to Mavs/ Rockets who are willing to rent Melo for half a season, but who also might reduce their offer as the date inches closer to deadline and they are smelling our desperation.
Melo's vision now: sign with the Knicks in summer (at ALL cost: either play out the season with Nuggets, or traded to a team renting him)