I already wrote an article highlighting Carmelo being shipped to Cleveland and Houston. In this article I'm going to talk about the possible trade scenarios of Carmelo being shipped off to Houston only. Carmelo is going to Houston. It is happening. We've have been saying it at The Sports Talk for almost a month now and we're sticking to that. Let's see what it is going to take for Houston and the Knicks to pull of this blockbuster deal.
Houston Rockets: Carmelo Anthony
New York Knicks: Ryan Anderson, Clint Capela, Trevor Ariza, Two 1st-Round Pick
This it the least likeliest trade scenario. The Knicks have said they do not want to take on Ryan Anderson's contract and the Rockets need to move it to take on Melo's contract. They are trying to find a third team to add to the mix so Anderson can be moved elsewhere. However, in this scenario the Rockets cannot find a third team and the Knicks are forced to take Anderson. By doing so the Knicks ask for two first-round picks in return. The first round picks will 2020 and 2022 lottery-protected picks. Trevor Ariza is an expiring contract that will help even out the contracts. Clint Capela is a nice piece for the Knicks as he has some upside and is young. On top of it if they do not like him, his contract is expiring as well.
Houston Rockets: Carmelo Anthony
New York Knicks: Trevor Ariza, Brandon Knight, Jahlil Okafor
Phoenix Suns: Ryan Anderson, Jerryd Bayless, Ron Baker, 2018 LAL 1st-Round Pick
Philadelphia 76ers: Eric Bledsoe, Tyson Chandler
The Suns have been connected to this trade scenario for a while because of their reported willingness to take on big contracts if it comes with assets. Not too long ago there was a rumor that a fourth team may be involved. Lets say that fourth team is the 76ers.
The Rockets like always receive Carmelo. The Knicks once again receive Ariza's expiring contract. They also receive Brandon Knight who they have been connected to for a bit now as they try to find a veteran Point Guard to mentor Ntilikina. They also receive Jahlil Okafor, who many fans were pissed they missed out on in the 2015 draft. They can look at ahead and finally be excited. Money will be coming off the books with Melo's contract and they will be able to pair up Ntilikina, Okafor and Porzingis. All of a sudden the future is becoming brighter in New York.
Phoenix receives the big contract in Ryan Anderson that they were willing to take on. They also take on Jerryd Bayless and Ron Baker since they become thin at the Point Guard position in this trade scenario. Bayless is a veteran player that can hopefully mentor this young Phoenix roster. Baker brings a lot of energy and tough defense to the game. He can most likely find a role on Phoenix's roster. The big piece they receive is the Laker's 2018 first round pick from Philadelphia. If the pick lands at number 1 or from 6-30, the Suns will receive the pick next year. With the Lakers looking like they will likely be at the bottom of the barrel for one more year, this pick is very intriguing for the Suns.
The 76ers may be the biggest winners in this trade. They give up the rights to the Lakers' 2018 first round pick, but they are still able to keep their first round pick for 2018. The only player they give up is Jahlil Okafor and he won't even be a starter for them. They add Tyson Chandler to replace him off the bench and Chandler brings something the 76ers lack. DEFENSE. I think he can also be a great mentor for Joel Embiid. Yes, they drafted Markelle Fultz. However, is he ready to be the starting Point Guard? Well, he doesn't have to be just yet. Eric Bledsoe can slide into that starting spot and let Fultz learn for a bit. The 76ers get deeper and better. With this trade they can be looking at a possible top 5 seed in the East.
The Most Likely Scenario
Houston Rockets receive: Carmelo Anthony
New York Knicks receive: Eric Bledsoe, Trevor Ariza, HOU 2020 First Round Pick
Phoenix Suns receive: Ryan Anderson, NYK 2020 First Round Pick
This is the trade scenario that I think is most likely to happen. The Knicks have been connected to Bledsoe. The Suns have been connected to Ryan Anderson. It is a much simpler deal to get done than a two team or four team trade. Once again in this scenario the Suns take on Ryan Anderson and receive a first round pick. It is not as sexy as the pick they would receive from the Lakers, but they're happy taking on the Knicks pick. 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. The Knicks do give up a pick, but they receive a first round pick back from the Rockets in the same draft. Both picks are lottery-protected. They get a veteran Point Guard in Bledsoe, which they are looking for to give Frank Ntilikina some learning space. Like in every scenario we have looked at Ariza is reuniting with the Knicks. 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 very soon.