Rumors had swirled about a Carmelo Anthony trade for so long that I became convinced that it wasn’t going to happen. I figured if a trade was to be made it would have been made after a week or two of public dialogue and that all the talk after was just hot air fanned by a media ravenous for a big character-driven story.
Okay, I was wrong on that count!
However in the aftermath of the trade there has been a rush to pass judgment on the three team six thousand player deal. It’s only natural, speed triumphs thought every time in today’s commentariat (an apt King Kaufman term to describe the community of sports commentators). The problem in evaluating the trade is that there is far more that we don’t know yet than we do. I say that fully confident that ‘Melo will fit in nicely with the Knicks offensive system. But with three teams and 12 (okay it only felt like 6000) players there are a lot of questions that have to be resolved, and some of them soon.
For instance, what is Denver going to do get for Raymond Felton? They didn’t trade for him to be their backup point guard, and the entire reason for including Chauncey Billups in the trade was to accelerate the rise of Ty Lawson to starting point guard.
Will the Nuggets keep Danilo Gallinari? And if not, what will they obtain for him?
Does this trade mark the end of the Donnie Walsh era with the Knicks and if so, who replaces him?
How will Knicks coach Mike D’Antoni integrate Corey Brewer into his rotation? Brewer is an elite perimeter defender and D’Antoni has made effective use of such players in the past (see, Bell, Raja).
Minnesota has become the NBA equivalent of the Cincinnati Bengals, a last chance option for failed prospects. It’s worked for Darko Milicic and Michael Beasley, do they have more of that dust for Anthony Randolph?
Okay, that one doesn’t have to be settled this week, but if the Wolves give Brewer’s minutes to Randolph, it will be a big indicator.
What we know is that the Knicks improved themselves short term at a possible dire long term cost of having the flexibility to pursue a title.
That said, the team has improved its brand markedly. They are a team that features two of the ten best known NBA players.
The Nuggets got a big raft of young talent in exchange for a player whose tenure with the team was ending. It’s not quite the NBA equivalent of the Herschel Walker deal, but if I’m Denver GM Masai Ujiri, I’m pretty happy with my handiwork.
The T-Wolves no longer own their 2014 draft pick.
Once the issues we don’t know sort themselves out and most of them will over the next 48 hours, then we will know what to make of this trade.