The blockbuster DeMarcus Cousins trade will impact the market around the NBA including the one for New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony.
The NBA All-Star Game on Sunday was the most-viewed All-Star broadcast since 2013, but it had nothing to do with the game. Fans tuned in to watch a glorified pickup game for the drama. The Russell Westbrook–Kevin Durant feud was the main event, but DeMarcus Cousins and Carmelo Anthony were key contributors on the undercard.
The Kings decided to leak conflicting information about Cousins’ availability all weekend, putting him in the uncomfortable position of being ambushed by the media during All-Star weekend. Finally, Sacramento shocked the league on Sunday by trading Cousins to the New Orleans Pelicans.
Sacramento has agreed to trade DeMarcus Cousins to the New Orleans Pelicans, league source tells @TheVertical.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 20, 2017
The Kings are being killed for this move. They didn’t receive anything close to equal value, and after all their talk of how much they loved Cousins, they still moved him. They also have an owner who reportedly believes that Buddy Hield has “Steph Curry potential.”
So what does this mean for the New York Knicks? If the Kings couldn’t even wrestle away Brandon Ingram from the Lakers what can the Knicks possibly get for Melo?
The Cousins trade should be a wake-up call for Phil Jackson. Nobody is going to pay big for an aging Anthony when a star like Cousins set the market so low. The Kings publicly advocated for Cousins while Phil Jackson took every opportunity to publicly and privately undermine Anthony. The Zen Master hurt his best player’s trade value enough. The Cousins trade hurt it even more. It set a low market value for superstars with baggage.
The Clippers reported offer of Austin Rivers, Wesley Johnson, and Jamal Crawford could be the best New York can do. Rivers, 24, is an improving young player and the prize of the deal, but Johnson is having the worst season of his career and Crawford is 37-years-old. Not exactly a perfect piece for a rebuilding situation.
The chances of prying Phil Jackson favorite, Jae Crowder, away from the Celtics along with one of their many draft picks are slim to none. Crowder is shooting over 40 percent from three-point range and 10th in the league in effective field goal percentage. The Celtics reported interest (or lack thereof) has wavered over the last few weeks anyway.
There’s still Carmelo. How does one of the ten best players in the NBA being moved in such a stunning fashion impact him? The ten-time All-Star has that damn no-trade clause and is obviously going to be very selective about where he goes. The Celtics are out, and Anthony may not have ever been in on them in the first place.
The Conventional wisdom suggests that the Cavs have nothing to offer after the injury to Kevin Love, but after the Cousins trade, it appears that anything can happen. The Knicks may fold and except a mediocre package of role players from Cleveland like Sacramento did.
The Knicks shouldn’t just settle like the Kings did. Nobody wants to be the Kings.
The trade deadline is on Thursday at 3 p.m., and the rumors are heating up. Poor Jahlil Okafor has already been linked to multiple teams just today alone. There’s no better deadline in sports than the one in the NBA. Teams can alter the future of their franchises with one move. GMs can make or break their careers.
We’re all looking forward to the drama on Thursday and Carmelo Anthony will be the star of the show.