DENVER, CO - MARCH 08: Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks looks on as he sits on the bench late in the game against the Denver Nuggets at Pepsi Center on March 8, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. The Nuggets defeated the Knicks 110-94. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.
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The Carmelo Anthony trade was a monumental move in New York Knicks history. The Knicks State of Mind podcast breaks down all the “what ifs.”

Love him or hate him, Carmelo Anthony always wanted the challenge of playing in New York. The superstar wanted to don the orange and blue for the New York Knicks and prior to the trade deadline in 2011, the franchise sent a massive package for the All-Star.

The rest is history.

The Knicks State of Mind guys are joined by ESNY’s Geoff Campbell to talk about all the “what ifs” from the Melo trade.

Although it was clear that Anthony wanted to go to the Knicks, there were rumors of the Houston Rockets and Chicago Bulls being in the mix as well. Not to mention, the New Jersey Nets—yes, the New Jersey Nets—were making a push to acquire the dominant scorer from the Denver Nuggets.

But alas, the Knicks gave up the picks and the players needed to acquire Melo. However, had the team called his bluff and waited for free agency, would Melo have ended up in New York anyway?

Chip Murphy envisions a scenario where the Knicks don’t trade for Melo and then use those picks and players to add a different superstar.

“I think if they don’t make that trade, they’re in position to keep accumulating assets and then make a trade for Chris Paul when that scenario comes along,” Murphy said.

In this scenario, the Knicks could potentially sign Anthony in free agency and pair him with an All-NBA point guard. The LeBron James-led Miami Heat were an unbelievable team, but they were by no means invincible.

Miami still would have the advantage over New York, but Paul and Melo were certainly capable of knocking off LeBron, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh at that point in their careers.

It’s easy to second guess the trade for Melo when Chris Paul’s name enters the conversation. After all, hindsight is always 20-20.

Catch the full episode wherever you listen to your podcasts.

ESNY staff reports.