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Knicks make final offer for Melo

Posted on: February 20, 2011 3:41 pm
Edited on: February 21, 2011 1:08 am
LOS ANGELES -- The Knicks have made what was described as their final trade proposal for Carmelo Anthony Sunday, pushing the months-long drama toward its merciful conclusion, has learned.

The Knicks would send three starters -- Wilson Chandler, Danilo Gallinari, and Raymond Felton -- to Denver for Anthony, Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams and Anthony Carter, sources said Sunday. The Nuggets would get the Knicks' first-round pick in 2014, while Minnesota would get Eddy Curry's expiring contract and Anthony Randolph from New York. Curry would then be waived, and the Knicks would send as much as $3 million to Minnesota to pay his freight. 

The Wolves also would send Corey Brewer to Denver in the proposed deal. Carter must approve the trade and waive his Bird rights for the trade to be approved.

Confident that a Friday night meeting between Anthony, his representatives, and a Nets contingent led by Russian owner Mikhail Prokhorov and hip-hop mogul Jay-Z did not result in a commitment from Anthony to sign an extension with New Jersey, the Knicks are drawing the line. They are not offering rookie Landry Fields or Russian center Timofey Mozgov, two pieces Denver has asked for at various times in the negotiations, sources said.

"We shall see," Anthony said on his way out of Staples Center after the All-Star Game Sunday night, after being informed of the status of trade talks with the Knicks.

Earlier, Anthony revealed that he did not give, nor did the Nets ask for, a commitment from him on whether he would sign a contract extension that would trigger the completion of a trade that already has been agreed to between the Nuggets and New Jersey. He described the meeting with Prokhorov as "a good meeting" and "interesting," and said he was "just listening" to the Nets' presentation.

"I didn't give anybody a definitive answer," Anthony said.

Anthony said the Nuggets "have been knowing everything since day one" about where he would and wouldn't sign an extension. 

"They know everything," he said.

While Anthony privately has been entrenched for months in his position that he would only agree to an extension with the Knicks if the Nuggets traded him, a person familiar with the three-time All-Star's thinking told Sunday night that he did not close the door on the Nets in their meeting. Doing so would have eliminated the Nets as a last resort to get the three-year, $65 million extension that would be off the table in a new collective bargaining agreement.

The Anthony drama now rests in the hands of Nuggets executives Josh Kroenke and Masai Ujiri, who must decide whether to accept the Knicks' offer, continue pushing for a trade to the Nets, or keep Anthony beyond Thursday's trade deadline. Sources say it is unlikely a deal would be agreed to Sunday.

"The deadline is Thursday," Anthony said. "So obviously something has to happen, whether they trade me or I stay in Denver or whatever," Anthony said. "The end is here. All this stuff will be over with. I'm excited for this stuff to be over with, and I'm pretty sure everybody else is excited for it to be over with."

Anthony said he would "not be upset at all" if he were still with the Nuggets after the deadline.

A person familiar with the trade negotiations told Sunday that the Nuggets were still working through specifics with the Knicks and were pushing for New York to add Mozgov to the deal. Denver also hasn't shut the door on the Nets, with whom they have agreed to the framework of a trade, according to the source. But it appears that key figures in the organization have grown comfortable with the Knicks' offer, which was sweetened significantly after the Nets re-emerged in the discussions during All-Star weekend in Los Angeles.

As the Knicks' pursuit of Anthony reached a tipping point Sunday, the team released a joint statement from Madison Square Garden chairman James Dolan, president Donnie Walsh, and coach Mike D'Antoni saying all three were in agreement on the Anthony discussions. In a rare and obscure step, the statement also asserted that "no one from outside our organization" was involved in the Anthony process -- an obvious reference to former team president Isiah Thomas, whose input Dolan has received since Thomas was replaced by Walsh in 2008.

With so many agendas and obfuscation attempts at play, it was difficult to predict Sunday how Denver would respond. But Nuggets executives have signaled that they want a resolution to the Anthony matter by the end of All-Star weekend -- a timetable that Anthony publicly stated that he favored, as well. 

Just as the Knicks' negotiating strategy was sidetracked by Dolan's decision to get involved in the negotiations and meet with Anthony Thursday night in Los Angeles, so have the Nuggets' efforts been influenced by agendas affecting their still complicated hierarchy. Sources say Denver's reluctance to deal with New York throughout the process was prompted more by a feeling among some segments of the team's power structure that they should not give Anthony what he wants -- the extension with the team of his choice. But sources also assert it will be difficult for Denver to turn down what could be the best offer they will receive for Anthony -- one that gives them a quality point guard, Felton, on a better contract than the Nets' Devin Harris; a young, promising frontcourt player, Chandler, who is more polished than New Jersey's Derrick Favors; a hard-nosed, floor-spacing shooter, Gallinari, instead of multiple first-round picks from New Jersey whose ultimate value is undetermined; and $20 million in immediate savings.

The Nuggets' basketball staff is said to have preferred the Nets' long-standing offer centered around Favors and multiple picks, which would set the team up for a long-term rebuilding process -- whereas the Knicks' offer provides assets better suited to a quicker turnaround after Anthony's departure. But the Nets' competing offer ran its course with Friday night's obligatory meeting between Anthony and New Jersey officials, which reported was allowed as a condition of Anthony receiving permission to meet with Dolan on Thursday.

Keeping Anthony beyond Thursday's trade deadline remains an option, though the likelihood of that has decreased dramatically, sources say. Denver is not seriously considering a nuclear option with Anthony, which would involve telling him the team will not trade him to new York and also won't give him the extension -- making New Jersey the only path to the money for Anthony. That option, sources say, would reflect poorly on the organization and could hinder its future dealings with players.


Since: Dec 7, 2006
Posted on: February 20, 2011 11:39 pm

Knicks make final offer for Melo

As a Knicks fan, I have mixed feelings.  As a Syracuse fan as well, I have loved Carmelo ever since he won the Orange a national title.  He is also one of my favorite players now and I would be ecstatic for him to be a Knick, especially after Prince James snubbed us last summer to take his "talents to South Beach."  But Denver is asking for way too much.  I have no problem taking on Billups because we can always get Williams or Paul after next year and he is a proven winner, but to give up Gallo and Chandler is asking way too much.  I agree with Chrisvillain about Chandler.  He is the one player who actually plays defense and besides Lee, he was the one smart draft pick from Isiah.  The trade as it stands would destroy our team.  I do see that Melo makes up for the offensive production of Gallo and Chandler on an average game, but our roster is now thinner.  There is much more pressure on Douglas and I am not sold on him.  Chandler has proven he can be a great sixth man and knows how to play defense.  Gallo is not a great defender, but seems to be there to draw offensive fouls.  Denver is the scapegoat here because if they don't make this trade, they will be stuck with an unhappy player who will just walk after the year and the team will get quickly knocked out of the playoffs by losing to LA, Dallas, or San Antonio in the first round.  And although I would prefer he sign as a free agent, he wants his money given the collective bargaining agreement and Denver is not going to let him walk like Cleveland and Toronto did with Bosh and James and essentially get nothing in return through a sign and trade.  They should be happy that they are getting something in return.  They want so many players to match all his production and to replace him.  No matter where he ends up, they will not be getting a player of equal value.  They should be satisfied that they won't end up empty handed in a trade.  I have no problem asking for Felton, Gallo OR Chandler and a draft pick, but they are demanding way too much by asking for both Gallo and Chandler.  They are nice players, but they cannot replace his production.  The Nuggets are treating this like they are about to lose Michael Jordan.  The Minnesota part of the deal also does not bother me because it gets rid of that fat pile of trash in Curry.  The trade should be re-worked slightly:

Knicks get:  Melo and Billups
Nuggets get:  Felton and Gallo OR Chandler and 2014 1st round pick from Minnesota
T'Wolves get:  Curry's expiring contract and Randolph

Denver would never accept this trade, unless they have no choice if Melo says he wants the extension and he will only sign it in NY.  But if the trade goes down as stated now, the smartest move would be the one made by the Wolves, which is their plan to dump Curry.  I wouldn't be surprised if he never plays another NBA game.  No team should want this lazy, fat, out of shape loser.

Since: Jan 31, 2011
Posted on: February 20, 2011 11:37 pm

Knicks make final offer for Melo

and this is why i can't stand basketball

Since: Apr 26, 2007
Posted on: February 20, 2011 11:25 pm

People are still talking about the trade???

I haven't seen soo much speculation regarding a certain trade in my life. Seriously, Denver, Knicks, Nets, Melo isn't that GOOD. Yes, I said it, Melo isn't that good. 

Since: Nov 20, 2006
Posted on: February 20, 2011 10:59 pm

Knicks make final offer for Melo

melo and billups are excellent addition...but The knocks would be stupid to make this trade....Who are going to be the complimentary players?.....getting rid of 1 is acceptable...but 2 very good young players..... Wilson chandler has got to be kept. He would most definately be the blue for the knicks team..solid Offense and defense.   Galinari is the tradeable one.

Since: Dec 20, 2008
Posted on: February 20, 2011 10:50 pm

Knicks make final offer for Melo

If this trade goes through people will quickly find out within 2 weeks how bad of a deal it is for the Knicks. There will be zero defense and rebounding will be aweful.  Melo will get the kiddies excited with a few flashy layups and mid-range jumpers. Whoop-dee-doo, does that make up for all the points everyone the Knicks will have to send off give each game now?  Hell no. But attention-seeking Melo will be happy for the time being. I wonder how many "smart" basketball fans will overlook it when the overall Knicks end game score will actually be less for them than it is now with the current more balanced roster.  What then, will Melo still be considered a savior in their blind eyes?

I'm not totally against Melo coming here, the only way to make this trade work though would be for the Knicks to keep one of their 3 starters, and I'm not talking about Landry Fields.  I'm talking about Felton, Gallo, or Chandler.  Then they'd still have a nucleus to build around in 3 guys instead of just 2.  And all you Landry Fields fans who think he's completely proven himself as a starter need to wake up.  Yeah the guy gave some good first impressions with a few extra rebounds in his rookie year so far, but he only scores 6-10 points a game.  But what so many overlook is how he actually gets those points... 90% of the time he is given a wide open shot because the opposing team is too busy worrying about Amare, Felton, Chandler, and Gallo.  And with all the open shots Fields gets he still only musters up 6-10 pts a game.  If anything they should trade Fields along with Mozkov who are both more easily replaceable and keep Chandler or Gallo.   

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: February 20, 2011 10:50 pm

Knicks make final offer for Melo

@redwings--I think only a portion of Billups' $14 million is guaranteed next year, so you could let him go and not suffer a huge cap hit.  I could be wrong about this, but I remember trade talk earlier this year which suggested it was possible to send him to some playoff team needing backcourt help because his contract wasn't bad.

I looked it up and you're right.  The way it's written, whoever has Billups under contract has until 5 days after the season ends to either cut him and only be on the hook for 3.7 million dollars or keep him and honor the entire 14 million dollars.   That's good for the Knicks financially if this trade goes through, especially with the new CBA coming up where we could see lower team caps or hard caps....

Could be great for Denver though.  Billups has said many times he wants to play 4 more seasons and prefers to stay in Denver the rest of his career.  Don't forget Billups was born and raised in Denver.... family and friends there, etc.   So now the Nuggets not only get 3 young and talented players and a first round pick in that package but they also have the ability to resign Billups and keep him in Denver.... all 3 of those kids Denver would get ( I know Felton is 26 but young enough) are under contract for next season with one of them good for 2 more years.  Chauncey Billups could help convince them to sign long term...... 

In my opinion whether he's traded to the Nets or Knicks, the Nuggets make out pretty damn good here... and considering the strong likelihood they would lose him at the end of the season, that's pretty damn good.

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: February 20, 2011 10:39 pm

Knicks make final offer for Melo

Of course, you also need the right combination of stars to win big as well and that's where the Knicks will have to work hard to find a strong couple of defensive stars to balance Melo and Amare.  But, I'm not convinced that Chandler and Gallinari are those players.  As a Nuggets fan, I hope they are, but I'm not sold.

I understand why you're not sold on those players yet... it's impossible to be sold on 22 and 23 year old kids in the NBA... it's way too early to guarantee they are the answer for a team wanting to win a championship.  But that being said, those kids considering their age and salaries they are being paid are performing extremely well in a high pressure situation in New York,,, you can't disount that...  one thing I don't agree with is when you said the league is full of those players... kids at that age don't USUALLY perform that well..... is the verdict still out on those kids?  Sure... but they are off to a great start....

Since: Mar 2, 2009
Posted on: February 20, 2011 10:09 pm

Knicks make final offer for Melo

@redwings--I think only a portion of Billups' $14 million is guaranteed next year, so you could let him go and not suffer a huge cap hit.  I could be wrong about this, but I remember trade talk earlier this year which suggested it was possible to send him to some playoff team needing backcourt help because his contract wasn't bad.

Since: Apr 18, 2010
Posted on: February 20, 2011 10:07 pm

Knicks make final offer for Melo

He isnt going anywhere but the knicks... Diva wants to get courted, maybe the Nets will give him roses?

Since: Mar 2, 2009
Posted on: February 20, 2011 10:05 pm

Knicks make final offer for Melo

@redsox--I get the argument that it doesn't make sense for the Knicks to go after Melo at all.  I agree. 

But, if they are going to get him, I don't understand people complaining about the deal as it is proposed.  The Knicks aren't making out like bandits, of course, but on talent alone they're coming out well ahead if you ask me.  The league is chock full of solid players like Gallinari, Felton and Chandler, but ask the Utah Jazz how easy it is to win championships with a roster of solid players who work hard.  You need stars to win championships and Melo IS a star.  Of course, you also need the right combination of stars to win big as well and that's where the Knicks will have to work hard to find a strong couple of defensive stars to balance Melo and Amare.  But, I'm not convinced that Chandler and Gallinari are those players.  As a Nuggets fan, I hope they are, but I'm not sold.

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