Carmelo Anthony to Portland?
An interesting rumor surfaced yesterday as the Carmelo Anthony trade saga continues to unfold.
For the past week, Anthony has pushing the New York Knicks to trade him to the Houston Rockets in order to form a dynamic big three with Chris Paul and James Harden.
To put that in perspective the trio combined for 69.6 points per game last season and would be one of the NBA’s most lethal offensive combinations.
However, the Knicks have been reluctant to trade Anthony to Houston in large part because the Knicks want to get younger and more athletic players (Houston does not have many now since they traded their entire bench for Chris Paul) and the Knicks are hesitant to take on Ryan Anderson’s contract (3 years $61 million remaining).
This created a need for a third party to take on Anderson’s contract in order for the financial components to work on the deal.
Teams such as Portland Trail Blazers, Phoenix Suns and Milwaukee Bucks have become the ideal trading targets for Anderson as all are in need for a stretch four. Each team does not have the salary space as of now but can dump one year contracts to the Knicks if need be.
Portland seems like the ideal team for Anderson as they are trying to get Damian Lillard as much help as possible to make sure he’s happy playing in the city. Portland received next to nothing from the power forward position a year ago.
Noah Vonleh started 41 games and averaged 4.4 points and 5.2 rebounds per game.
Al Farouq - Aminu started 25 games when Portland went small and averaged 8.7 points and 7.4 rebounds. Not bad numbers until you saw he was receiving 29.1 minutes per game.
Meyers Leonard was a big time bust after signing a contract extension averaging 5.4 points and 3.2 rebounds.
Ryan Anderson would be an immediate upgrade.
Things changed yesterday when a report from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski claimed that Portland was only willing to participate in a three team deal if Carmelo Anthony would waive his no trade clause to play in Portland.
Portland believes the addition of Carmelo Anthony to the backcourt of Damian Lillard and C.J McCollum would make them a top contender in the Western Conference.
It is extremely unlikely Carmelo Anthony would waive his his no trade clause to play in Portland as Anthony has expressed his desire to play in Houston or Cleveland (Cleveland does not have the necessary players to acquire Anthony).
There’s no harm for the Portland front office to play hard ball and try and convince a star like Anthony to come play for them. Just because all the rumors circulated that Portland is an ideal third party candidate to make the deal work, there was no report Portland would be interested in taking on Ryan Anderson’s contract.
Now it looks like an answer has been reached on that front.
This is an interesting development to keep track on as the Carmelo Anthony trade may depend on it.