Tag:Denver Nuggets
Posted on: February 23, 2011 5:50 pm
Edited on: February 23, 2011 6:45 pm
 

Carmelo Anthony in uniform for Knicks Wednesday

It's official: Carmelo Anthony will take the court and make his debut for the New York Knicks on Wednesday night. Posted by Ben Golliver.




The New York Knicks host the Milwaukee Bucks at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night and they do so with a lot of new faces, including All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony.

After completing all the necessary paperwork, signing his contract extension, getting league approval and having all of the involved players pass their physicals, Anthony, along with Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams, Corey Brewer and Anthony Carter, will join their new Knicks teammates on Wednesday.

It will be the Big Apple's first look at Anthony, who will don No. 7. His familiar No. 15 - the only number he wore with the Nuggets - has already been retired by the Knicks franchise in honor of Earl Monroe.

CBSSports.com shot the following video from Carmelo Anthony's introductory press conference in New York.


Posted on: February 23, 2011 11:20 am
Edited on: February 24, 2011 1:39 am
 

NBA trade deadline: Wednesday rumors and buzz

A one-stop shop for all of Wednesday's NBA trade deadline buzz. Posted by Ben Golliver.  trade-deadline

Tuesday saw only a few minor deals, but Wednesday is already off to a fast start. 

Here's a compilation of various trade rumors that hit on Wednesday.

(Latest Buzz)

(Afternoon Buzz)

  • Ken Berger of CBSSports.com reports : "Cleveland and Portland had been in discussions with Charlotte for Gerald Wallace, whom sources say is headed to the Blazers. Package for Wallace believed to be centered around Andre Miller. Marcus Camby was discussed, but he might retire rather than report to Char. Other sources indicate the Wallace deal would be Przybilla, a pick and cash for Wallace. If true, Bobcats punting."
  • HoopsWorld.com reports : "Sources close to the situation confirm ... Trail Blazers to land Gerald Wallace from Charlotte" but that the teams are "still working on player details."
  • A source close to the situation tells CBSSports.com that as of 4:30 PM Eastern there is still "nothing to confirm" regarding a potential Portland Trail Blazers trade for Charlotte Bobcats forward Gerald Wallace.
  • The Oregonian reports that center Joel Przybilla "hasn't heard anything about a trade to Charlotte" and expects to start Wednesday night when the Blazers face the Lakers. The paper also report's that Przybilla "said he spoke with agent Bill Duffy last night and Duffy 'didn't seem too concerned' that he would be moved."
  • ESPN.com reports that the Cavaliers may be out of the picture for Wallace. "I'm told Cavs-Bobcats talks about Wallace are dead. Wallace didn't want to be in Cleveland anyway. Portland talks real serious."


(Lunch Buzz)
  • ESPN.com reports that the Utah Jazz continue to field plenty of offers but that they are not necessarily anxious to make a move. "Today I've spoken with several GMs who put in calls to the Jazz within minutes of hearing about the Williams trade.  Who are they after? In particular, Paul Millsap and Andrei Kirilenko are coveted. The Jazz won't just give either player away. They don't think Derrick Favors is ready to play heavy minutes at the 4, and they want to bring him along slowly."
  • Yahoo! Sports reports that the Portland Trail Blazers are "pushing hard and getting closer to completing a deal" for Charlotte Bobcats forward Gerald Wallace but that Wallace has other suitors in the Eastern Conference. The site notes that the Cleveland Cavaliers have also expressed interest in Wallace recently. Meanwhile, 
  • ESPN.com reports : "The Cavs and Bobcats have talked about Gerald Wallace, sources say, but haven't made significant progress."
  • The Associated Press reports : "Cavs and Bobcats have had on/off talks about Gerald Wallace. Told 'Cats hesitant to deal Wallace unless they can get lots back."
  • CSNNW.com reports : "Just got off the phone with an NBA source who says his team believes the Wallace-to-Portland deal is "done." Supposedly, Batum not involved in the proposed Wallace trade."
  • The Washington Post reports that it could be a quiet deadline for the Wizards, as they don't want to take back salary or part with any of their young pieces.


(Morning Buzz)
  • Ken Berger of CBSSports.com with much more on the deal . "The Nets have agreed to acquire All-Star point guard Deron Williams from the Jazz for Derrick Favors, Devin Harris, and two first-round picks in a three-team trade that also sends Troy Murphy to Golden State, sources confirmed to CBSSports.com.  In a swift and astonishing comeback from their failed pursuit of Carmelo Anthony, New Jersey also will get Dan Gadzuric and Brandan Wright from Golden State, which will buy out Murphy, sources said. Murphy is considering signing with Boston, Miami or Orlando once his buyout is complete." 
  • Sports Illustrated reports that the Utah Jazz are fielding offers for their big men after acquiring Favors in the trade. "Jazz phones "blowing up" with calls about Millsap, Jefferson, source says. Teams trying to see if they can get either on the cheap. With about 24 hours till the deadline Utah suddenly is ripe with assets. Jefferson/Millsap/Okur, picks and Kirilenko's $17.8 mill exp deal."
  • The Oregonian reports that, after many calls, the Blazers "appear to be shifting toward standing pat at the trading deadline after several flirtations with teams ran into dead ends." 
  • Sports Illustrated reports that the Blazers have been "pushing Greg Oden in trade talks" but that "Oden's injury history, predictably, has GM's reluctant."
  • ESPN.com reports  that the Portland Trail Blazers have been "quietly shopping Greg Oden" and that New Jersey Nets point guard Devin Harris "was their top target and now he's off the table. Not sure where they turn."
  • ESPN.com reports that the Charlotte Bobcats "seem intent on moving" forward Gerald Wallace and have had talks with the Dallas Mavericks, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, Indiana Pacers and Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavs could absorb Wallace into their trade exception.
  • Sam Amick reports  that the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics are "in discussions that would send Nate Robinson to the Warriors." He reports that the deal is "not done yet though." Update: Amick now reports : "Source says Nate Robinson will not be coming to the Warriors. Never discovered the other pieces, but that deal w/ Boston is not going down." So there you have it.
Posted on: February 22, 2011 3:58 pm
Edited on: February 23, 2011 1:45 am
 

NBA trade deadline: Tuesday rumors and buzz

A one-stop shop for all of Tuesday's NBA trade deadline buzz. Posted by Ben Golliver and Matt Moore.  trade-deadline

For months we've heard from NBA executives and agents that the uncertainty around Carmelo Anthony was holding up a lot of league business.  With the Denver Nuggets finally agreeing to trade Anthony to the New York Knicks on Monday, a chain reaction of other moves is expected around the league. 

Here's a compilation of various trade rumors that hit on Tuesday.

(Latest Buzz)

Ken Berger of CBSSports.com reports: "No decision expected from New Jersey tonight on Devin Harris scenarios. 'Will sleep on it,' source says."

ESPN.com reports that the Sacramento Kings and New Orleans Hornets are "closing in on a deal that would send Carl Landry to the Hornets for Marcus Thornton and David Andersen." Sam Amick also reports the same deal and notes: "trade call in the morning." Meanwhile, Yahoo! Sports reports that the deal is Landry for Thornton and cash, without Andersen. NBA.com also reports that Andersen is not involved. 

Here's Matt Moore's full breakdown on the Landry for Thornton proposed trade.

ESPN.com reports that the Miami Heat are shopping forward Mike Miller, who has missed much of the season so far due to injury. "According to multiple league executives, the Heat have floated Mike Miller in several different trade scenarios as they look to upgrade at the center or point guard positions." 

Here's some quick thoughts on how easy or difficult it will be for Miami to move Miller. 

NBA Fanhouse reports that Nene says Denver is "where I want to be" and "I definitely hope I get [an extension]."

NBA.com reports that the proposed swap of expiring contracts between New Jersey and Golden State is being discussed but is only "50/50." The site writes that Nets forward Troy Murphy and a second round pick would go to the Warriors for center Dan Gadzuric and forward Brandan Wright.

Yahoo! Sports reports: "Golden State and New Jersey near agreement to trade Dan Gadzuric and Brandan Wright for Troy Murphy and 2012 second rounder." All of the players involved are on expiring contracts. There's still discussions that could expand deal to include Devin Harris and 3rd team - possibly Dallas or Portland - but NJ-GSW part solid. If G-State completes deal for Murphy, it's expected he'll get bought out and become a free agent. Then? Orlando, Dallas, Boston, Miami etc."

ESPN.com reports that the Orlando Magic may be interested in Memphis Grizzlies forward Zach Randolph. "While it's unclear if it was actually proposed, I was told that, internally, the Grizzlies have discussed sending Randolph to Orlando for Brandon Bass and Jason Richardson. The thinking in Memphis is that the deal would keep the Grizzlies competitive this season while also giving them a young power forward going forward. Randolph is an unrestricted free agent this summer and it isn't clear if the Grizzlies can afford to keep him, while Bass is due $4 million next season and has a $4 million player option in 2012-13." 

NBA.com reports that the Atlanta Hawks are "interested" in Washington Wizards point guard Kirk Hinrich but that Washington's current price - a young player and a first round pick - is too much. The Hawks have reportedly mentioned guard Mike Bibby and forward Marvin Williams.

(9:30 PM Eastern Update)

Ken Berger of CBSSports.com reports further details on the possible Devin Harris swaps with the Dallas Mavericks and New Jersey Nets. "Nets considering sending Devin Harris to Portland for Andre Miller or Dallas for Caron Butler's expiring contract, Dominique Jones and 1st."

The Bergen Record is reporting that New Jersey Nets point guard Devin Harris may be headed to the Dallas Mavericks. 

ESPN.com is reporting that "sources say Mavs have already rejected Nets' request for Dom Jones and a first-rounder in addition to Caron Butler. Butler [alone] is their offer."

The Dallas Morning News throws some unsourced cold water on the Devin Harris talk. "Normally, the Mavericks look for bargains when it comes to the trade deadline. This year, bargains won’t do. Steals are what they are seeking. If it’s not along the lines of something great for something close to nothing, they don’t seem interested. Speculation about a reunion with Devin Harris seems farfetched, at best. And the Mavericks are in the enviable position of liking their situation and not needing (or wanting) to take on any long-term money in any deal."

Yahoo! Sports is also reporting that the Mavericks are in the mix for Harris. "The Nets have discussed deals with a multiple teams for Harris, with possible scenarios in the works with the Portland Trail Blazers and Dallas, sources said. Privately, Harris is hoping for a trade back to Dallas where he started his career, two sources familiar with his thinking told Yahoo! Sports. The Mavericks also have serious interest in a reunion with Harris." 

ESPN.com reports that there is a "100% chance of Devin Harris being traded. Dallas and Portland likeliest spots. Mavs offer Caron's expiring contract. ATL not offering much for Devin. A shame because he'd be a great fit with Hawks."

NBA Fanhouse reports that the Denver Nuggets are done dealing: "Source close to situation doesn't expect Nuggets to do any more deals by Thursday deadline. Said any deal would have been put into this one."

The Star-Tribune reports that the Minnesota Timberwolves are sending reserve big man Kosta Koufos, who was acquired from the Utah Jazz in an Al Jefferson trade last summer, to the Denver Nuggets for a 2015 unprotected second round pick. 

ESPN.com reports: "Atlanta is interested in Devin Harris, who is being shopped hard by NJ. Not offering Marvin Williams, though. Portland and Dallas interested too."

The Oregonian reports that a source tells the paper that Portland Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen is "eager to get something done at the trade deadline."

The Sacramento Bee reports that Carl Landry won't play in tonight's game against the Miami Heat because the team is "involved in serious trade talks" that involve him. Sam Amick reports that "at least four teams [are] strongly pursuing" Landry.

(7:30 PM Eastern Update)

Yahoo! Sports reports that the Hawks are considering trading Jeff Teague and Mo Evans to Cleveland for Ramon Sessions and Manny Harris. The Hawks have suddenly gotten very active and are bringing up Jamal Crawford quite a bit in other deals. Teague still has some upside but fell backwards when given the opportunity for the starting job. Sessions could have a big impact on the Hawks' offense. 

Chicago media is reporting that the Bulls have traded second-year forward James Johnson to the Raptors. Why is this relevant? They now have cap room to chase another acquisition, potentially Anthony Parker. Yahoo! Sports reports the trade is for a draft pick. The Bulls have announced in a press release that they are receiving Miami's 2011 first round pick from Chicago.

ESPN.com reports that the pick could be flipped to the Memphis Grizzlies in a package for guard O.J. Mayo. "Word is Bulls have NOT abandoned hope of striking deal for OJ Mayo and now have one more first-round pick to peddle after James Johnson deal."

Ken Berger of CBSSports.com reports than an attempt to net Portland Trail Blazers center Marcus Camby by the New York Knicks has fallen through, but that the Blazers are "actively shopping" Camby, Joel Przybilla and Andre Miller. Berger writes that Portland is "very likely" to make "at least one trade" prior to the deadline.

Yahoo! Sports also reports that the Blazers are generating interest in Camby: "Knicks actively trying to acquire Portland center Marcus Camby, but source said Blazers are weighing more attractive options."

ESPN.com reports that the Boston Celtics pursued Minnesota Timberwolves forward Corey Brewer before he was traded to the Knicks in the Anthony trade and also notes: Houston covets 3 big men: Gortat, Varejao and Nene. Unlikely to get any if them.

Yahoo! Sports reports "Nene frustrated by not having contract extension offered by DEN yet. MIA, HOU & OKC interested. Nugs wont trade him and plan to make offer." a tad more here: "Nene wants extension in Denver - in 5 year, $50M-plus range - but sources say he's intrigued with how he'd fit into OKC. Feeling's mutual."

The Detroit News reports that the Orlando Magic, Miami Heat and New Orleans Hornets are "looking for bigs" and that Nets point guard Devin Harris "should be moved to Portland." Finally, that the Charlotte Bobcats are "shopping" both Gerald Wallace and Stephen Jackson, with Wallace "more likely to be moved."

Yahoo! Sports reports that the Oklahoma City Thunder are "taking a careful look" at Memphis Grizzlies center Hasheem Thabeet. The site reports the Thunder are only willing to pay "a modest price."

HoopsWorld.com reports that "plenty of teams have called for Aaron Brooks, but he's likely staying in Houston." The site also reports: "Source confirms that the Atlanta Hawks have expressed interest in Devin Harris. They've also inquired about Ramon Sessions."

The Sacramento Bee reports that sources tell them that "the Kings will make a move by the deadline" and that the team is seeking "player(s), cash, draft picks."

CSNNE.com reports that the Boston Celtics player that's finding his name in the most rumors is rookie guard Avery Bradley. "The one Celtics player whose name has come up most in conversations I've had today as someone who's drawing interest, has been Avery Bradley. That, plus D. Ainge's track record with late first-round picks, tells me he's probably going to be a pretty good player one day."

Sports Illustrated reports: "Oklahoma City looking for center, sources say. Have inquired about Thabeet, Nene, two players who fit go-young plan."

(4 PM Eastern Update)

There had been some talk that the Denver Nuggets might flip forward Danilo Gallinari for a draft pick after acquiring him in the Anthony trade. ESPN.com reports that the Nuggets plan to hold on to Gallinari.

ESPN.com reports that the Nuggets are hoping to sign big man Nene to a contract extension. "With Anthony moved, the Nuggets, according to sources, are focused on either extending Nene before the July 30 deadline or executing a trade closer to the draft," ESPN reports. "The Brazilian forward has the right to opt out of his contract at season's end and is poised to walk away from the $11.6 million he's scheduled to make in 2011-12 to become a free agent."

The New York Post reports that the Knicks need to add a big man and "hope to pursue Jared Jeffries if he gets bought out by Houston, former Knicks free agent Earl Barron, or a D-League player."

NBA.com reports that the Nuggets will now look to trade Al Harrington, who has a ton of money left on a five-year contract signed last summer.

Yahoo! Sports reports that the Portland Trail Blazers are "expected" to move point guard Andre Miller and center Marcus Camby.

Meanwhile, The Oregonian reports that center Joel Przybilla, who has been on the block for months, would consider retirement or accepting a buyout if traded.

Yahoo! Sports reports that the Chicago Bulls are "open" to trading forward James Johnson and may be seeking a draft pick in return.

The Bergen Record reports that the New Jersey Nets are shopping point guard Devin Harris hard.
  Yahoo! Sports reports that the Cleveland Cavaliers have made "everyone" available in trade.

Fox Sports Ohio reports that the Cavaliers have a "big deal in place" using the trade exception generated by last summer's trade of LeBron James.

Yahoo! Sports reports that the New Orleans Hornets are "shopping" second-year guard Marcus Thornton and are asking for a first round draft pick in return. The New Jersey Nets are reportedly interested.

CSNNE.com has shot down a potential Shane Battier to the Boston Celtics deal. 

Yahoo! Sports reports that the New Orleans Hornets see Sacramento Kings big man Carl Landry as a "target."
Posted on: February 22, 2011 12:06 pm
 

Clippers trying to nab Danilo Gallinari?

Posted by Royce Young

Some wondered when the Carmelo Anthony trade happened if the Nuggets' new pieces should actually pack for Denver. There was talk that the Rockies might not be their final destination.

Masai Ujiri told NBA.com otherwise saying, "We got these guys to play for the Nuggets." That doesn't mean other teams are going to at least inquire.

According to ESPN.com, the Los Angeles Clippers are offering a first-round pick that they acquired from Minnesota to Denver for Danilo Gallinari. The pick is top 10 protected in 2011, but completely unprotected in 2012, making it potentially one of the most valuable picks out there. You know, because Minnesota stinks and all.

An interesting deal for both sides that could say a lot. The Clippers have been hunting a quality small forward for some time as rookie Al-Farouq Aminu develops. Gallinari would certainly fill a role next to Blake Griffin, even if he's not exactly the ideal scoring punch they're probably hoping for at the 3. Still, with his outside floor-stretching ability teamed with Eric Gordon, the Clippers would have a nice inside-out look.

Thing is, that pick is really valuable. And while Gallinari is a good player, he might not be a good enough fit to justify giving it up.

On the Nugget side of things, a deal moving Gallinari would signal a plan to blow up things in Denver. I don't think Ujiri was lying when he said those players were acquired to be Nuggets, but he also might not have expected deals like the one the Clippers are offering. He has some very intriguing decisions to make here. If he landed that pick the Nuggets would have some tough lotteyr years ahead, but would also have a bevy of first-round choices to rebuild with.

Knowing Ujiri, he's going to try and ask for more from the Clips. Probably Aminu or maybe an expiring (Rasual Butler, Craig Smith) to balance things out.

But these next few days leading up to the deadline will be telling for Denver. They're at a crossroads and Ujiri has to decide if he wants to check, fold or go all in with what he's got.

Posted on: February 22, 2011 12:00 pm
Edited on: February 22, 2011 1:48 pm
 

Carmelo Anthony trade chat 1 p.m. EST

Join us live at 1 p.m. EST to chat about the Carmelo Anthony trade. We want to get your thoughts and answer your questions about the biggest trade of the season. 



More coverage of the Carmelo Anthony trade to the New York Knicks
For more on our coverage of the Carmelo Anthony trade to New York, check out: 

Ken Berger's report on the breaking deal .  

Matt Moore on whether this is good or bad for Carmelo Anthony.  

Royce Young discusses the impact the deal has on the Knicks.

Ben Golliver discusses the trade and hands out grades
Posted on: February 22, 2011 9:54 am
 

Nuggets now trying to ink Nene to extension

Posted by Royce Young

Now that the Carmelo Anthony situation has been resolved, it's time for the Nuggets and Masai Ujiri to move on with the roster. There's been a downgrade for sure, but the challenge now for Denver is figuring out what to do with the current team.

Whatever the decisions may be, there's an easy one to make already: Keep Nene long term.

As Ken Berger reported a month ago, the Nuggets could be faced with another Melo situation in regard to their Brazlian big man. Nene has an opt-out option this summer and he's probably looking hard at using it. His value is high and with centers being at a premium, he's looking for a new paycheck. And to this point, it hasn't looked like Nene was all that interested in signing.

So the Nuggets have reportedly shopped Nene some since they are faced with basically the same problem they just tried to fix. Either deal Nene or have nothing to show for it when he leaves.

But ESPN.com reports the Nuggets are pushing hard for a contract extension for Nene.

"But teams that have been calling for Nene -- and I’m told that more than half the league has rung Denver in recent weeks to register interest in the Brazilian big man -- are gradually being informed that a key element of the Nuggets’ post-Melo plan is trying to convince Nene to stay."

The Nuggets have a big man that can be built around, so obviously losing Nene would be a massive setback to go with losing Melo. In keeping Nene, Denver would be making the statement that its trying to stay competitive in the West, at least for now. Moving him would signal a complete blow-up.

Will Nene sign an extension with Denver? Hard to say. He's got that opt-out option and you have to wonder if losing Melo will affect his thinking.

While the Nuggets want to extend Nene and keep him, if it becomes apparent by Thursday that's not happening, it wouldn't be shocking if Denver turns on its face and trades Nene anyway. They want to keep him just like they wanted to keep Melo, but sometimes business just gets in the way of what you want.
Category: NBA
Posted on: February 22, 2011 3:47 am
 

George Karl: "It's time to move on, reinvent."

George Karl comments on his new team moments after finding his star Carmelo Anthony has been traded to the New York Knicks
Posted by Matt Moore

George Karl has beaten cancer twice. He's a Hall of Fame head coach, a loving father, and by all accounts a simply stand-up guy. But his patience was tested this year with the constant shadow of the Carmelo Anthony trade rumors. With Anthony traded to New York late Monday night, Karl spoke with reporters and reflected on the bittersweet transition of his team from a playoff contender to a rebuilding project. 




Karl is clearly not happy about the developments. He's been through this before, but it doesn't make it any easier. He's now in charge of a team that is both rebuilding and trying to make the playoffs. But Karl knows that without a superstar, the Nuggets have a concrete ceiling above the first round.  He carefully dodges the question of what he thinks of the players he's getting, but it would have been easier for him to throw out general, positive terms. He elects for "exciting" which is never something a coach wants. A coach wants experienced. A coach wants talented. But exciting? George Karl has J.R. Smith, he doesn't need exciting. 

Perhaps most interesting, though, is Karl's reluctance to answer regarding the developing trend of NBA players dictating their own destinies with no regard for the teams who drafted them or the players around them. Karl's wise to want to ponder that one carefully before answering. 

But most frustrating for Karl? Half of these players he just acquired may not be around in three days. It's a lot of change for a guy who's been in Denver for quite some time to deal with. Of all the people who have been jerked around by the Melo situation, Karl was the one no one wanted to see suffer because of the nonsense. 

Karl uses the phrase "reinvent" several times, which may be the best word for what the Nuggets are trying to do. Maintain competitive basketball while looking to the future. But inventing a superstar? That's going to take more tricks than Karl or Masai Ujiir can provide. 
Posted on: February 22, 2011 2:18 am
Edited on: February 22, 2011 2:31 am
 

Melo Trade: Denver stumbles into good NY deal

The Nuggets flirted with danger but wound up trading Melo for a good set of assets. The Melo era is over in Denver. 
Posted by Matt Moore

This was not the best run trade negotiation period in history.  The Nuggets repeatedly pushed for too much, and then when they somehow miraculously got offered that much, they pushed again. Masai Ujiri played Russian Roullette with this trade but in the end, it wasn't Carmelo Anthony, or Donnie Walsh, or Leon Rose, who hit the Magic chamber. It was Isiah Thomas loading it six chambers full. As usual. 

The Denver Nuggets now have a completely different team than the one they entered the All-Star break with.  The odds of the roster as it stands currently being the one after the trade deadline are also very low. The Nuggets are currently in-between transitions, able to compete for the playoffs but with no true star, they're likely stumped once the first round hits. They have their point guard of the future (Ty Lawson) and now Raymond Felton complicates that. They have talented combination forwards, and just added more. They have aging veterans and now have young pieces. They're probably going to make the playoffs but probably won't get very far. They're rebuilding but trying to win now. They're in two very different places at the same time. 

But really, this was the best circumstance they could have hoped for once their last ditch effort to get Mikhail Prokhorov to convince Anthony to come to the Nets was proven to be what we always knew it would be: a fantasy. Yes, getting Devin Harris, Derrick Favors, Troy Murphy's expiring and four first-rounders would have been ideal, but it simply wasn't to be with Anthony holding all the cards.  Somewhere, in the back of Denver's mind was the image of the Cavaliers walking off the floor after losing that 25th game. So it was the Knicks, as we knew all along it would be, really. And for it being the Knicks? They got a whale of a deal. They walked off with four players who have started at some point for the Knicks, including their quality free agent point guard, the young super-long shooter, and the high-upside foreign center prospect. They nab a first rounder down the line, multiple second-round picks, and clear a bunch of cap space, especially if they decide to move some of the other pieces. 

We could have had this over months ago, but Masai Ujiri walks out a winner with this. He landed a good set of assets, draft picks, and cap space to move forward while also not crippling his roster out of a playoff spot. This is a win-win-lose for Ujiri. He got a significant amount of assets without being forced to commit to an immediate tanking scheme, but he still lost a superstar. 

And that's the big thing to remember here. If Carmelo Anthony were to have a crisis of conscience, call up Ujiri, and say "I want to stay. I'll sign the extension," Melo would still be in uniform tomorrow for the Nuggets like he said he would be. Because four good players an a pick is great, but you'll always take the All-Star. That's why they're All-Stars. 

But beyond that, this was their All-Star. Thats what will get lost in all this. Tomorrow thousands of kids with Melo jerseys will wake up in Denver owning throwbacks. Fans have lost their guy. The All-Star. The crown jewel. The sports hero. He was drafted there. When Joe Dumars looked over him, Denver committed to him. They put pieces in place to help him win a championship, and now they have a B- point guard, an Italian shooter, an expiring wing, and a Russian big to try and fill that whole. They can't have the title contention and rebuild. Not how it works in this league. 

So the Nuggets will have decisions to make once this season is over. Blow it up completely? Try and land anothers superstar? Commit to Lawson-Afflalo-Gallo? What do they do with Nene? These are all things that will have to be answered between now and Thursday, and then this summer under a new CBA. But for an impossible situation with very little hope, and against a formidable trade partner across the table, the Nuggets have walked away with some dignity, some value, and some hope. It's finally over. Carmelo Anthony has been traded, and the franchise isn't in ruins.

"Thank God for Isiah Thomas" should be on a billboard outside the Pepsi Center. 
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com