New York Knicks fan, the party is over, right? Yeah, I know, the addition of Phil Jackson is a huge one. Believe me, I strongly think that that the Zen Master will change the course of the franchise. You have lots of reasons to stay optimistic. However, we don’t have to forget that after the end of the 2013-2014 campaign and no matter what the outcome for the Knicks is, Phil Jackson and the entire Knicks team will have to face a big challenge. They will have to somehow keep Carmelo Anthony in their roster. Things might get even more complicated, after the latest reports which state that the Houston Rockets will now be considered as one of the teams in pursue of Melo.
The Houston Rockets?
Yes, that’s right. Until now, we’ve heard that Melo would most probably be chased by the Los Angeles Lakers, who are in desperate search of their next superstar, the next face of the franchise. A few other teams were rumored to be in the mix, with the Dallas Mavericks being one of them, but no team actually stood better chances to have Melo in its arsenal next season than the Knicks.
Well, guess what, it is.
At least in theory, the New York Knicks could agree on a sign-and-trade with Houston, sending Carmelo Anthony away and at the same time receiving Jeremy Lin or Omer Asik along with a few other players. Not only is that possible, but Houston would be a great, I mean really great destination for Carmelo.
Think it that way. Melo will be 30 next season, right in the middle of his prime and he still hasn’t made the NBA Finals. How longer can he wait to get a chance to earn a ring? Would the New York Knicks change that much during this summer, so that they will become a championship contending team? That’s highly doubtful. Considering that the East has two powerhouses, the Miami Heat and the Indiana Pacers, which are expected to continue and dominate next season, the Knicks would most probably have to wait until the 2015-2016 season to even get a shot for the NBA Finals. And that’s if Phil Jackson and the front office manage to work their magic and achieve a drastic makeover in the roster. So why not join an already emerging force in the West, a team which features two superstars in their primes?
Both Howard and Harden are ring-hungry. After all, that’s one of the reasons Howard chose to depart from LA and join the man with the beard in Houston. Whilst the Rockets don’t seem to be capable of winning it all this year, they have certainly shown much potential. With a few moves, they could become a legit championship contender. And yes, the Rockets need to move Omer Asik for sure and get something in return, even if they lose some value. They could also trade Jeremy Lin, now that Patrick Beverly has proven that he can be reliable as the starting point guard of the team.
Just imagine how a trio of Dwight Howard, James Harden and Carmelo Anthony would be. Throw in Chandler Parsons and Patrick Beverly and you have your championship team. Really, things could get really scary in Houston if such a move was made.
Of course, trading for Carmelo Anthony is easier said than done for Houston. In other words, Phil Jackson won’t just give his blessings to Melo and agree on a trade. The Rockets don’t have the cap space to offer a maximum contract to Carmelo and the only way Houston could acquire him is through a sign-and-trade with New York. On top of that, even if Melo wants out and even if he somehow forces his way to Houston, the Rockets don’t have that great assets to offer to the Knicks in exchange.
On top of that, Phil Jackson came to New York for a reason, to make this team successful. Zen Master will try his best to put the Knicks into championship track and the first thing he would like to do is to do his best to keep Carmelo Anthony in New York. Of course, even the presence of Jackson can’t guarantee that Melo will be wearing the Knicks uniform next season. It’s true that the Knicks are considered the favorite to retain him but they are nothing but unsure about their chances.
There are several teams out there interested in Carmelo Anthony. The Houston Rockets are considered to be one of the strongest suitors but they are definitely not the only ones. And we’re still one month prior to the start of the post season. If the Knicks fail to make the playoffs, we can expected even more pressure put to New York. Lots of teams will exploit this disappointing course of the Knicks this season and they will try to lure Melo towards their side.
In short words, Rockets fans, don’t get overexcited. I know it’s really sweet to think of a possibility of watching Carmelo Anthony playing alongside Howard and Harden. I guess some of you have already tested this dominant lineup in your video game. However, I strongly believe that this will be not an easy movement at all, even if at the end it becomes reality.
If somehow the Houston Rockets acquire Carmelo Anthony this summer, they will be one of the best, the scariest teams in the league. The truth is that they need that extra ingredient to reach a championship level. At least that’s how things look at the moment. Melo’s addition will be more than enough. However, we don’t see such blockbuster deals happening every day in the NBA. In fact, with Phil Jackson on the wheel of the team, this trade might never become reality.