The general managers’ seats from both New York City NBA teams are heating up. Drastic changes are needed to save each franchise.
The Saga Continues
The Carmelo Anthony saga has dragged out long enough. It has become apparent that either he or Phil Jackson needs to move on. The gut feeling is Anthony will be moved rather than Phil, based on Jackson’s contract agreement with the New York Knicks.
This is just another example of how a number of the ownership groups in the New York market are completely disconnected from the fan base. Carmelo Anthony is beloved by a majority of the Knicks’ faithful. He passed on the chance to leave the Knickerbockers to play for a contender. That resonates with supporters.
This brings along a more important question: what is Phil Jackson’s vision for this team?
In the offseason, the “Zen Master” added Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, Brandon Jennings and Courtney Lee to the tandem of Carmelo Anthony and Kristaps Porzingis. It was calculated risk that has yet to pay dividends on the investment.
If Jackson does pull the trigger on a Melo deal, he will then have to offer some details into his vision of the future for the Knicks. Tearing down what was built in the offseason, less than a year in, has left the fan base questioning Phil’s every move.
The treatment of Carmelo Anthony may have an effect on how free agents perceive life in the “Big Apple.” If Phil Jackson is looking to land that big free agent catch after Melo departs, he may have as difficult of time doing so, then before Anthony arrived here.
The Carmelo Anthony saga will have a lasting effect on how the front office will be able to conduct business and will be a red mark on the legacy of the league’s greatest head coach.
The Brooklyn Bridge to a New Era
Brooklyn Nets’ general manager Sean Marks said he had a clear vision for the franchise during his introductory meeting last February. He had hoped that owner Mikhail Prokhorov would give him full authority to see that vision through.
In the last year, Marks has been able to evaluate this Nets team from top to bottom. What he may have come to realize, is that he will need to be the architect of the worst team in the NBA. The Nets are a team without an identity, and with the exception of Brook Lopez, any star power.
Adding stars may not be his biggest challenge. That challenge for Marks will be adding back assets to replace the draft picks that were traded to the Boston Celtics for Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett by the previous regime.
There should be no “untouchables” for Marks. Moving Brook Lopez may replenish some of the assets from the Celtics trade, and prepare the fanbase for what this really is, a rebuild. Moving a player like Trevor Booker would also be beneficial, he is a player that will turn 30 in the next year, and could certainly provide a contender with a boost.
The Nets will not have the benefit of their own first round pick until 2019. That should be the target year for Marks, all trades and asset gathering should be for the 2019 NBA Draft. If Marks truly has a vision on how to systematically return Brooklyn to viability, it needs to start this year.