It is being reported that Carmelo Anthony will waive his No Trade Clause to be traded to either the Houston Rockets or the Cleveland Cavaliers. I take a look at the options for the teams involved.
Houston Rockets Scenario:
Houston Rockets receive: Carmelo Anthony
New York Knicks receive: Eric Bledsoe, Trevor Ariza, Rockets’ Lottery Protected 2020 First Round Pick
Phoenix Suns receive: Ryan Anderson, Knicks’ Lottery Protected 2020 First Round Pick
The Rockets are looking to create their own “Big 3” after acquiring Chris Paul. They were said to be targeting Paul George, but they missed out on him. The Knicks have said they do not want to acquire Ryan Anderson because of his contract. To make this work we need to get a third team involved. That team is the Phoenix Suns. The Suns have said they are willing to take on “bad” contracts if it involves assets. They can also unload Eric Bledsoe’s contract, which they have been trying to do for a while now, making the hit of Ryan Anderson’s contract a bit easier. They will also receive the asset they look for in the first round pick from the Knicks. The Knicks do give up a pick, but they receive a first round pick back from the Rockets in the same draft. They get a veteran Point Guard in Bledsoe, which they are looking for to give Frank Ntilikina some learning space. Trevor Ariza and the Knicks have a reunion as they Rockets have to give him up to take on Melo’s contract. Ariza is a one year rental, so the Knicks are happy with that. This deal works out in everyone’s favor and I would not be surprised to see it happen.
Cleveland Cavaliers Scenario:
Cleveland Cavaliers receive: Carmelo Anthony
New York Knicks receive: Tristan Thompson, Iman Shumpert, Cavaliers’ 2018 First Round Pick (via Portland)
This trade I think is a little less unlikely. The Cavaliers seem to want to part ways with Kevin Love, but the Knicks do not seem interested in taking on his contract. Instead they can keep Kevin Love and add Carmelo to the mix by giving up Thompson, Shumpert and a first round pick. Another reunion takes place in this scenario as Shumpert returns to New York. His contract is the same length as Melo’s, but is worth much less. Tristan Thompson has one more year on his contract than Melo’s does. However, the Knicks are fine with taking on a young defensive-minded center in Thompson. They also add on a pick in next year’s draft.
I think the Rockets’ scenario is more likely than the Cavs’ scenario because of the players and parties involved. I’m not sure if the Cavaliers are willing to move on from Thompson as he plays a big role on the boards and defensive end. The Rockets on the other hand seem to be willing to add another superstar no matter the cost.