Wednesday, February 9, 2011

I Won't Call This Post "Melo Drama"

When trying to decide what the big NBA story is this morning, I realize that it is already February and that can only mean one thing. As the trade deadline quickly approaches, some superstar must be in the middle of several rumored, blockbuster deals. This season the star in the spotlight is Carmelo Anthony and the proposed deals are numerous, complicated and of course, still rumors. Let’s outline the most intriguing possibilities being thrown around:
L.A. Lakers: It has recently been proposed that the Lakers are the frontrunner in acquiring Melo. Although Ron Artest has been reportedly asking for a trade out of Los Angeles, the proposal has the Lakers giving up Andrew Bynum instead. To me this trade seems unlikely. Even though the Lakers haven’t been as dominant this year as people expected, giving up a 7-footer to acquire another long-distance, rapid-fire scorer to play next to Kobe doesn’t exactly set the Lakers up for an easy road to a championship. In any case it is reported that Carmelo intends on playing for the Knicks in the ’11-’12 season, so any deal with the Lakers would probably just be for the remainder of this year.
New Jersey Nets: Early on last summer, when Dwyane Wade, LeBron and Chris Bosh were among the All-Star players who had to make big decisions about their contracts, the Nets were seemingly one of the frontrunners to acquire a franchise superstar. Again the Nets are in the discussion as a possible home for Carmelo for the same reason they might have gotten LeBron back in July, they have a lot of money and really, really need a good player. Carmelo seems a little too smart to pick a team based simply on the money he could make and in the modern sports era where players are constantly thinking about their lasting legacy, Melo must want to play somewhere he can win a title. That place is not New Jersey.
New York Knicks: The Knicks are the strongest candidate for Carmelo’s new home and have been since before this season even started. They are playing well, the Nuggets would be able to send him away to the Eastern Conference and there has even been a fairly feasible three team trade proposed. The Knicks would acquire Carmelo Anthony, while sending Anthony Randolph and Eddy Curry (who luckily has an expiring contract) to the Timberwolves and Wilson Chandler to the Nuggets, who would also get a first round pick and Corey Brewer from Minnesota. Furthermore, Carmelo would be a great piece for New York (where he’s already won a national championship with Syracuse) adding a slasher and three-point threat to the already lethal combo of Stoudemire and Felton that could take the East by storm.
Denver Nuggets: Let’s not forget that it is quite possible a deal won’t work out in the next two weeks and Carmelo could stay in Denver, at least for the rest of the season. Luckily it seems like both sides are dealing with this situation cordially and both sides have been continuing with business as usual in the NBA.
One of the great things about the NBA is how drastically a single player can affect the outcome of a game, a season and even a franchise which is why professional basketball is the most exciting sport in February. Hopefully we will be seeing Carmelo on the move, giving a new look to a franchise and creating a new NBA powerhouse in the process.

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