Carmelo Anthony Finally Dealt. Are the Knicks Ready to Contend?
February 21, 2011 13 Comments
So the Melo-drama is over. The inevitable happened. I wonder how Mikhail Prokhorov is feeling right about now.
In case you don’t have twitter here’s how the deal went down. The Knicks gave up Wilson Chandler, Danilo Gallinari, Raymond Felton, Timofey Mozgov, and their 2014 1st round pick. The Nuggets will also receive 2nd round picks in 2012 and 2013 that originally belonged to the Warriors. The Timberwolves get Eddy Curry’s expiring contract, Anthony Randolph and $3 million cash. Most importantly, the Knicks will acquire Carmelo Anthony, Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams, Anthony Carter, Renaldo Balkman, Corey Brewer and a 2nd round pick.
Throughout this whole ordeal Donnie Walsh had been adamant in his refusal to include both Gallinari and Chandler. Whether or not it was pressure from above to incorporate both players, I don’t think I’m alone in thinking that the Knicks have once again screwed themselves over for the future.
I’m also not alone in loving the idea of a ball-dominant wing player combined with a very good big man. Kobe-Shaq, Kobe-Gasol, Wade-Shaq, yeah, you get the picture. The problem with the Knicks picture is that selling the farm makes the combination significantly less lethal. Landry Fields, Toney Douglas and Ronny Turiaf ain’t going to get the job done by themselves.
The Knicks aren’t ready to contend. Anthony is a very good player but he doesn’t make those around him much better. Essentially a .500 team without Carmelo, it will become apparent that the Knicks will roll through the abundance of weak teams in the East but simply roll over when they face real competition.
Amare Stoudemire is not going to benefit from less touches and a ball-dominating non-creator.
Chris Paul or Deron Williams in 2012? Possibly, but like the Heat, the issue of adequate role players leaves them in quite the predicament. The combination of a superior point, wing and big player is as ideal as it gets from a star recipe stand point, but the headline ingredients cannot complete the meal without their lesser parts.
No draft picks and the potential for a hard cap in the future make the assembling of a quality supporting cast that much more difficult. Not to mention that putting all the eggs in the PG basket might not work out exactly as planned. Sorry to burst your Knick bubble if you hadn’t figured that one out. It sounds like the fool-proof Lebron plan all over again.
So what now? Do the Knicks just settle for a 4-6 seed in the Eastern Conference for the next couple seasons?
Donnie Walsh must know that his team can’t compete with the likes of Boston or Miami yet.
The much hyped Carmelo Anthony trade changes the complexion of things in the East but not drastically. The Knicks will be better but not as much as they should be given how much they traded away.
The Denver Nuggets suckered the Knicks into a bidding war with the Knicks paying not only in players but in their future as well.
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