Carmelo Anthony has by most measures had a storied basketball career. McDonald’s All American, as a freshman he led Syracuse to an NCAA title, was the 3rd overall pick in the 2003 NBA draft, he’s made 9 All Star teams, 10 playoff appearances, scored more than 23,000 points, made more than $180 million… And yet, he’s only once made it as far as the Conference Finals and there’s a nagging sense that his career has been a disappointment.
And now, with his Knicks at 21-28, and having already begun the transition to the Kristaps Porzingis Era, Anthony finds himself the most talked about piece of trade bait in the league, even though he can still light up the scoreboard, as he showed the other night, when he poured in 45 in a loss to the Hawks.
One rumor has him going to the Clippers in a three-team deal with Boston. The Clips are trying to salvage a season in which Blake Griffin only just came back from injury, Chris Paul just went down for 6 to 8 weeks, and they’re barely holding on to the 4 seed in the West. The Clippers have been as snake-bitten as Anthony over the years, so in one sense, it’s a match made in heaven. In another sense, it’s a horror show.
An even crazier proposal has ‘Melo going to Cleveland in exchange for Kevin Love, where LeBron James has been lobbying for a playmaker. All due respect to LBJ, but the Cavs already have one of the two best players in the history of the game, as well as Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love. What they maybe need is a center who can score more than 7.5 ppg, no?
Other destinations that have been floated include Dallas, Baltimore, and OKC, among others. But there are three roadblocks to any deal for Anthony: 1) he has a full no-trade clause that he would have to be convinced to waive, 2) he’s owed $54 million for next two years, and 3) he’s 32. Anthony was never so great, like LeBron, that he could be a gamechanger well past his prime, his minutes are way down, as are his rebounds and assists per 36 minutes.
Sorry, Knicks fans, but you’re either stuck with ‘Melo, or you’re not gonna get back much more than a bag of magic beans. But fear not, the trade deadline is just three weeks away – this’ll all be over soon.
Detroit Pistons (21-26) vs Boston Celtics (29-18)
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Memphis Grizzlies (28-21) vs Phoenix Suns (15-32)
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Minnesota Timberwolves (18-29) vs Cleveland Cavaliers (32-14)
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Chicago Bulls (24-25) vs Golden State Warriors (41-7)
9:30pm ET on ESPN
Atlanta Hawks (28-20) vs Houston Rockets (35-16)
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Golden State Warriors (41-7) vs Los Angeles Clippers (30-18)
10:30pm ET on TNT
Los Angeles Lakers (16-34) vs Boston Celtics (29-18)
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Dallas Mavericks (17-30) vs Portland Trail Blazers (21-28)
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Cleveland Cavaliers (32-14) vs New York Knicks (21-28)
8:30pm ET on ABC
Los Angeles Clippers (30-18) vs Boston Celtics (29-18)
2pm ET on ABC
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