But somewhere along the way, Anthony apparently agreed to a buyout with someone in Knicks management.
This is obviously a situation where the owner must sign off. It wasn't necessarily Jackson who overstepped his authority, but it sure sounds like it was.
I don't know how much money Anthony would've given up to hit free agency, but the Knicks likely came out ahead by not buying him out. Playing hardball worked, and Anthony eventually expanded his list of approved destinations beyond the Rockets. That allowed New York to trade him to the Thunder for Enes Kanter and Doug McDermott. Considering how Kanter has played, it seems unlikely the Knicks could have better spent the money saved in an Anthony trade.
This is why the commonly expressed sentiment that Dolan shouldn't meddle with the Knicks is misguided. He has billions tied to the franchise. He should have a voice in its operations. His problem is empowering the wrong people to take the most active roles and intervening at the wrong times with bad ideas.
This looks like an exception, though.