With a trade becoming more likely by the day, New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony should consider taking his talents to Portland.
The Portland Trail Blazer have gotten into the mix and want to bring Anthony into the fold. But reports are stating Melo has no interest in joining the Trail Blazers.
Is he making a mistake not considering them?
He certainly is.
If Anthony joins Portland are they immediate favorites to win the NBA Championship? Of course not. They can certainly compete.
If he was to join the super team of Houston or Cleveland he would have a high possibility of winning a championship next year. But here’s the problem with both teams: Their windows to win it all could both be very short. Cleveland for example, if you haven’t heard, they are in a “peculiar place.”
Furthermore to the Cavaliers problems, LeBron James could opt out of his deal at the end of next season. Which rumors are speculating he may be interested in playing for the Lakers or Clippers next year. So with the Cavaliers on the brink of exploding does Melo really want to go here? I don’t think so.
With the Rockets, if they make a trade for Anthony, they will have to give up some of their key role players like Trevor Ariza or Ryan Anderson. Melo is better than both those players but you would be removing guys that are crucial role players.
But the big risk is the point guard they traded for, Chirs Paul. Paul could opt out his contract at the end of next season. So even if Melo is traded to the Rockets, there is no guarantee that his friend Paul would stay in Houston. Especially if King James is on the market where he could team up with him. So if Paul bails after one season, the combination of James Harden and Anthony alone would not be enough to win a championship.
So here is why Melo should consider the Trail Blazers …
Some argue that Anthony needs an elite point guard to play with in order to win. Lillard would be an excellent point guard to play with to help Anthony win.
Yes, playing with Paul would be great for him. But again, the threat of him moving on somewhere else after one year is very much a possibility.
Lillard is coming off a season where he averaged 27 points per game and 5.9 assists. He puts up All-Star numbers but yet he does get left off All-Star rosters.
C.J. McCollum, on the other hand, has emerged as a star since Wesely Matthews went to Dallas. McCollum was a prolific scorer while playing his college ball at Lehigh. Once Matthews left and his minutes went up, he has shown he can be a prolific scorer in the NBA, too.
McCollum averaged 23 points per game while shooting 42.1 percent from the three-point line. If Anthony would team up Lillard and McCollum, that is a lot of fire power.
Also, the Trailblazers have Jusuf Nurkic. He was a steal when the Trailblazers made the trade with Nuggets. He averaged 15.2 points per game and 10.4 rebounds after the transaction. While with Denver last year he averaged only eight points and 6.4 rebounds. They have pieces in Portland and if they could add Anthony they would be close to competing.
For the Knicks to make a deal work with the Blazers, they most likely would have to take on the contract of one of these guys. But they could also get a nice return.
Maurice Harkless is a guy the Knicks could ask for. The former St. Johns star had his best season in 2016-17, averaging 10 points and 4.4 rebounds per game. He also shot 50 percent from the field.
The Knicks could also see about getting another draft pick, obviously preferring another first round pick. They could also ask about Caleb Swanigan. They worked out Swanigan before the draft back in May.
The Knicks’ best package could come from the Trailblazers. So perhaps they should convince Anthony to waive the no trade clause.
If he wants out of New York so bad, he is hurting his chances of getting out when he is limiting the Knicks to just Houston and Cleveland.
Expand your options. There are talented players that put on the Trailblazers Jersey and he can take them a step further. There are some who think he is not a fit for Portland because of they would be even worst on defense as they are now. But they can add defensive guys to fill out their roster. But they can add defensive guys to fill out their roster. The offense fire power they would possess should spark interest in Anthony.
The team has talent and would have to figure out how to get a little more cap space to help fill some cracks but they would be in contention.
Not considering Portland would be a huge mistake. Yes, Houston and Cleveland are better suited to win it all right now but their window could close quickly and a deal has already been shown to be complicated to complete.