Blog Entry

Knicks, Nuggets agree to Melo trade

Posted on: February 21, 2011 9:57 pm
Edited on: February 23, 2011 9:35 am
Seven months after the famous toast at Carmelo Anthony's wedding, the second member of the Knicks' proposed Big Three is on his way to New York.

Just like he wanted all along.

And now that Anthony is finally a Knick, teaming with Amar'e Stoudemire to form one of the most lethal scoring duos in the NBA, the question of how it's going to work is as important as who's coming next.

The Knicks and Nuggets agreed Monday night on a massive, three-team, 13-player trade sending Anthony to New York, three league sources told

The deal, approved by league officials Tuesday night, is Wilson Chandler, Danilo Gallinari, Raymond Felton, Timofey Mozgov and New York's 2014 first-round pick going to Denver for Anthony, Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams, Renaldo Balkman and Anthony Carter. The Timberwolves agreed to take Eddy Curry's expiring contract along with Anthony Randolph from the Knicks and send Corey Brewer to New York -- not Denver, as was discussed in a previous version of the trade. The Wolves get $3 million from the Knicks, which will be used to buy Curry out of the few remaining pay checks on his $11.3 million contract.

The Nuggets also get Golden State's second-round picks in 2012 and '13 from New York -- an incredible haul for Denver general manager Masai Ujiri considering the superstar he was forced to trade in his first few months on the job only had one destination in mind. Denver also gets Greek center Kosta Koufos from Minnesota for a second-round pick, a wrinkle added during the trade call with league officials Tuesday. Mozgov and the second-round picks being added after the Knicks made what was described as their final offer Sunday further called into question whether Madison Square Garden chairman James Dolan overruled his basketball staff to close the deal.

As they said on one of the news shows Monday night in New York, "If your name is not Amar'e Stoudemire ... you've been traded!"

"They gave up their team," one rival executive said of the assets New York surrendered for Anthony, the league's sixth-leading scorer and a four-time All-Star.

Despite the assets surrendered for Anthony, the deal was another bold step for Knicks president Donnie Walsh, who needed only two years to clean up a decade-old mess at the Garden and put two of the top 10-15 players in the NBA in Knicks jerseys in a span of seven months. Though the Knicks team that emerges from this trade will have flaws, it is the most relevant -- and most dangerous -- team that has inhabited the Garden in more than a decade. The key player the Knicks would have refused to give up in the deal was Landry Fields, a second-round pick who has emerged as one of the top rookies in the league.

Pending the passing of physicals, Anthony and Billups will make their Knicks debuts Wednesday night against Milwaukee at the Garden.

The question becomes whether Walsh will have enough flexibility to make the third member of the Anthony wedding trinity, Chris Paul, appear between 31st and 33rd Streets when he is a free agent in 2012. Deron Williams also will be a free agent that summer, and reported last week that Williams began contemplating a union with Stoudemire last summer. It isn't clear whether Stoudemire and Anthony making a combined $40 million in 2012-13 will allow space for a third max player under a new collective bargaining agreement. But once the Lakers, Celtics and Heat set the precedent for superstars teaming up, it can't be good for them and not good for others.

The Nets, whose pursuit of Anthony ended Monday night in a crushing disappointment for Russian billionaire owner Mikhail Prokhorov, could expand the deal by taking two ex-Knicks from Denver but are not fully committed to the idea, according to a person briefed on the negotiations. The Nets' involvement depends on which two of the four ex-Knicks the Nuggets want to trade. Nuggets officials have been pushing for some degree of assurance that they can flip two of the Knicks players they are getting for draft picks, which they value more.

It was presumed earlier Monday that Denver would flip Gallinari and Mozgov to New Jersey for two first-round picks, providing the final incentive for Denver to part with its franchise player. But sources indicated Monday night that the Nets may actually want Felton in that scenario, and that New Jersey prefers Felton over acquiring Andre Miller from Portland in one of several separate potential trades they are discussing.

Either way, Anthony finally will get his wish Tuesday -- a three-year, $65 million extension with the Knicks, the team he has pushed to be dealt to since September. reported in December and again in January that Anthony, if traded, wouldn't sign an extension anywhere but with the Knicks. His persistence was tested in recent days, when Anthony agreed to meet with Prokhorov, hip-hop mogul Jay-Z and other Nets management figures during All-Star weekend in Los Angeles as a condition of getting permission to meet with the Knicks' Dolan. Anthony was careful not to give any commitment to Prokhorov, but he also didn't turn the Nets down. To ensure that the Nuggets could get a competitive offer from New York, Anthony needed to leverage the possibility of signing the extension with the Nets. So in a way, Anthony and Ujiri were working in tandem all along to get Anthony to his preferred destination in a way that satisfied both their agendas.

Anthony, 26, will join fellow All-Star Stoudemire, 28, to form one of the most potent offensive duos in the NBA -- and the highest-profile superstars in their prime that the team has had in the lives of most Knicks fans. But with the Knicks giving up three starters and Mozgov, a 24-year-old 7-footer, New York will have a thin bench and still won't have a defensive big man to take pressure off Stoudemire. In addition, Stoudemire and Anthony will be scheduled to make $40 million combined in 2012-13 -- perhaps hampering the Knicks' efforts to land a member of that summer's star-studded free-agent class including Paul, Williams, and Dwight Howard.

Meanwhile, Denver's new basketball brain trust of Ujiri and executive Josh Kroenke passed an enormous test of their will, patience and negotiating chops with flying colors. Going all the way back to September, when they refused to pull the trigger on a four-team Melo trade involving Charlotte and Utah, Ujiri and Kroenke expertly played the Knicks and Nets against each other to the tune of a potentially massive package of assets for Anthony. The strategy resulted in an out-of-control groundswell of public support in New York for the Knicks to acquire Anthony, a player some significant members of the organization were determined not to give up major assets to acquire. And in an unimaginable twist given the obstacle that Anthony only wanted to re-sign with the Knicks, the Nuggets could wind up walking away with significant assets from both of the teams that pursued their star player.

It is common for general managers to print money in trades through contract-swapping. The Nuggets could essentially wind up printing draft picks by flipping two of the Knicks' players they didn't want for assets they value more. Even if the Nuggets wind up trading none of the ex-Knicks to New Jersey, it was an extremely impressive debut in the hot seat for Ujiri, a Nigerian-born former international scout who was part of the Toronto front office that got burned by free agent Chris Bosh last summer.

The Knicks get older, but arguably better at the point guard position with Billups, 34, taking over for Felton, 26 -- though Billups is not a classic pick-and-roll point guard and will have trouble playing the heavy minutes Felton endured. Williams, a disciplined, 6-9 reserve, will help bolster New York's undersized front court, and the addition of Brewer to the deal gives the Knicks a much needed wing defender.

In the end, this one's all about Melo -- a sidekick for Stoudemire who will cause problems for Boston, Miami and Chicago while serving as further magnetism for future free agents.  

They're still one shy of a Big Three.

For up to date news on the NBA trade deadline, follow Ken Berger on Twitter at @KBerg_CBS
For more on the Nuggets' trade of Carmelo Anthony to the New York Knicks: 
Ben Golliver breaks down the winners and losers from the trade
Did this trade make the Knicks contenders? Royce Young has his doubts
Carmelo Anthony: No one man should have all that power , thinks Matt Moore. 


Since: Nov 16, 2006
Posted on: February 22, 2011 7:10 pm

Knicks, Nuggets agree to Melo trade

I agree 100%

Since: Sep 2, 2006
Posted on: February 22, 2011 6:48 pm

Knicks, Nuggets agree to Melo trade


For you idiots who feel this way, let me break this down for you.

1.  They followed the rules.  See, unlike the NFL which has the franchise tag, players can choose to go anywhere they damn well please.  LBJ made the mistake of not telling anyone and screwed over the cavs and his rep.  Melo told the world (he still gets shit on for some stupid reason) and Denver got something out of it. 

2.  Everyone keep crying and moaning about there only being 6 or so relevant teams.  NEWS FLASH, EINSTEIN: The NBA for the past 30 or so years has never had more than 6-8 relevant teams at any point.  Go look at the lis tof will find maybe 8 or so different teams winning a title in the past 30 years.  In the 80's it was lakers, celtics, 76ers, int he 90's it was bulls, knicks, rockets, and in 2000's it was spurs lakers, nets, pistons to a small extent.  The point is the NBA HAS NEVER BEEN ABOUT PARITY, IT WAS ALWAYS BEEN ABOUT SUPERSTARS.

So now everyone is crying because there are 6 or so super teams with 2 or more stars in it.  When in reality, the NBA has ALWAYS been this way

Since: Dec 23, 2010
Posted on: February 22, 2011 5:21 pm

Knicks, Nuggets agree to Melo trade

All I know is that when Carmelo plays in NY he scores a average of 30 Points a Game. If you add Felton-Chandler-Mozgov Points per game they dont even come close to Melo's NY Average. So like someone Posted here when this all adds up we Lost Gallarni and his scoring. This is a Great Trade for both Knicks and Nuggets. The Knicks now are a Contender instead of a 500 Team. Stoudamire and Melo great combo. Fields is a upcoming young very good Player. Billups is up there in age but he will equal Feltons output of 17 points per Game. We will be weak at Center with Turiaf. I hope the Knicks have something in mind there. What caught my intrest is this guy Corey Brewer. This is a nice surprise. He seems to be a young Forwad with a great upside. Stoudamire-Carmelo-Turiaf-Billups-F


 Now we can compete. I wish we could pick up a defensive Center by Thursday but if not Turiaf goes out everyday and bangs his body and that will have to be good enough. The Bench will hold its own with Dougls-Brewer-Williams-Azubuike if healty. Pretty light bench but now I believe we will make Playoff noise. This is a Upgrade from our 500 Team.

The Bookies took notice. The Knicks overnight went from 20 to 1 to win East Championship to 8 to 1. There is always HOPE

Since: Feb 22, 2011
Posted on: February 22, 2011 4:24 pm

Knicks, Nuggets agree to Melo trade

I believe. The new CBA will probably make leaving either more difficult or a whole lot less attractive.

If you're a GM, its all about assuring big name free agents that you've got cap space, or a plan to create it, to land other big name stars.

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: February 22, 2011 4:08 pm

Knicks, Nuggets agree to Melo trade

His comment during "The Decision" told me all I needed to know....."I'm takin' my talents to Souf Beach."  Translation:  I'm heading to South Beach with my posse so we can party and live it up all year, while winning a championship will be less work and basketball can be secondary to clubbing in Miami every night.  They already have the 2 Superstars in place and winning a championship will be that much easier, plus the pressure isn't all on me to get it done.

Man, you should win clown of the year with posts like that.  So let me get this straight, please correct me if I'm wrong.  So you have a problem with Lebron choosing Miami for the following reasons?

1) Better partying in Miami
2) Better clubs
3) Better basketball team
4) Easier and more likely to win championship(s)
5) Less pressure on Lebron since it's shared with other superstars.

Agreed. So now let me add a couple more reasons why that was the right choice.  He's going to make the exact same money playing basketball in Miami as he would have in New York, and unlike Carmelo Anthony he's not from New York so there are no ties there.

What's your problem loser??? Why do people always have to choose the hard way or make decisions that benefit the state of New York for it to be the right decision?   I hate how Lebron did it with a primetime show on tv and I hate how he didn't let Cleveland know his decision in advance.. but he was an UFA and had the right to go anywhere he wants... do you know what an UFA is??


Since: Sep 5, 2006
Posted on: February 22, 2011 3:10 pm

Knicks, Nuggets agree to Melo trade

Dawgs fan, I couldn't have said it any better.  While I like the fact that the Knicks are another good team in the Eastern Conference landscape, I HATE watching all of these players go to just a few teams.  As you said, there are only 6 NBA teams even worth watching.  Stern might as well contract the rest of the league and just have NBA teams in the biggest cities, because it's pointless to be a fan of anyone else.

Phillykid, I totally agree with you about all the players going to a few teams. EACH team needs a superstar to build a team around, not them all on a few different teams. However, I disagree about there only being 6 teams worth watching. There's still hope because of the young and growing teams like the Thunder, Grizzlies, Clippers, Bulls and it even looks like the Nets will be relevent in a few years. There are other teams that are only a few moves away from being contenders as well, the Warriors, and Blazers to name a few. Despite the big names not knowing the meaning of loyalty, I believe the future is bright for the NBA.

Since: Apr 18, 2007
Posted on: February 22, 2011 3:09 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Apr 18, 2007
Posted on: February 22, 2011 3:00 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Sep 5, 2006
Posted on: February 22, 2011 2:38 pm

Knicks, Nuggets agree to Melo trade

D'Antoni is going to have to re-evaluate his coaching style now that Billups and Melo are there. Anthony needs the ball in his hands to be effective and D'Antoni's system relies on quick cuts and off-ball movement. Also, Chauncy is not quick enough to run like Nash and Felton did, as well as not being very effective in pick and rolls. He's also been developing into more of a shoot first PG over the last couple years. Mike D'Antoni has some major issues coming up that will have to be dealt with very quickly in order for this team to go anywhere.

Since: May 9, 2010
Posted on: February 22, 2011 2:21 pm

Knicks, Nuggets agree to Melo trade

"They might as well dissolve all the NBA teams except for the Lakers, Spurs, Celtics, Heat, Magic, and now the Knicks!"

I think that's an excellent idea, though I'd keep the Pistons as well.

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