In the latest edition of dog-bites-man news:
So sayeth Woj:
Armed with a hope that Carmelo Anthony will eventually waive his no-trade clause, the New York Knicks have reached out to the Boston Celtics, Los Angeles Clippers and Cleveland Cavaliers to probe their interest in a trade, league sources told The Vertical.
Knicks president Phil Jackson is determined to find a destination and deal that Anthony would agree to accept before the Feb. 23 NBA trade deadline, league sources said.
Jackson is determined to rid the roster of Anthony and his contract, and start rebuilding around Kristaps Porzingis, league sources said.
The reality of New York reaching out to Boston and L.A. isn’t really newsworthy. There are only a few franchises Carmelo might have considered thinking about possibly becoming interested in, and these two, along with Cleveland, are on the short list. If there are takeaways from all this rumor-mongering, it’s that:
— Phil Jackson is apparently dead-set on moving Melo.
— He isn’t going to wait for Melo to ask to be moved, since that may never happen, and he’s being proactive about trying to show Anthony (and the fans? And Mr. Dolan?) that he’s trying to make something happen.
— Maybe there’s some hope with Cleveland struggling of stirring up a bidding war between the Cavs and Celtics for one of the few players on the market who could be a difference-maker in this year’s market. “War” is probably putting that a bit strongly. Maybe a bidding skirmish.
— There was one bit of man-bites-dog to come out of all this. Before you prepare your Melo-for-Blake hot takes, stay woke:
Keep in mind that you cannot have (2) Designated Rookie Max extensions on your roster acquired via a trade at any time.— Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) January 26, 2017
Currently there are 7 players that fall under this category; K. Irving, J. Harden, P. George, J. Wall,R. Westbrook, D. Rose and B. Griffin.— Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) January 26, 2017
That Rose trade just keeps getting better and better, huh?
In all likelihood, nothing comes out of all this. Anyone interested in trading for Carmelo is going to be a contender, meaning they’re unlikely to disrupt their squads mid-season to try and work him in (remember how well that worked in 2011?). The Knicks reaching out is pretty standard, given their swoon of late and that the only other roster with any real value, Kristaps Porzingis, is untouchable. It’s also hard to imagine Danny Ainge spent the past few years acquiring a treasure trove of top draft picks to use them up on thirty-something Melo. I’m sure the Knicks called to gauge interest and I’m sure Ainge was like “I’ll give you Marcus Smart and a 2nd-round pick.” Without Blake on the table, I can’t imagine what the Clippers have to offer New York. The biggest news here is the ever-publicized separation between Carmelo and Phil. I wonder if they’ll stay friends after the divorce.