NBA trade rumors indicate that the New York Knicks may have finally found their potential trading partners for the proposed three-way deal that could finally send Carmelo Anthony out of town.
Anthony, the Knicks’ 32-year-old small forward, has been the subject of intense trade rumors for months in the aftermath of a reported dispute with New York Knicks president Phil Jackson. According to various reports, Jackson wants to trade Carmelo, prompting team executives to work overtime to try to find a scenario that would work for all parties.
Carmelo, after all, would have to waive his no-trade clause before any sort of a deal could get done.
NBA trade rumors now making the rounds indicate that the Boston Celtics would be willing participants in a three-team swap that would ship Carmelo Anthony off to the Los Angeles Clippers, one of five teams recently identified by FanSided as potential landing spots for the former Denver Nuggets star’s services.
Other interested parties are believed to include the Lakers and Cavaliers.
Regardless of the Celtics’ willingness — or unwillingness — to acquire Carmelo Anthony in a trade, however, most experts seem to believe that the Celtics would be willing to participate in a multiple-team arrangement whereby it could receive some other talent in return.
“It appears the Celtics could be that team [to facilitate a Carmelo Anthony deal],” reported NESN, “although it’s unclear who [Celtics general manager Danny] Ainge and Co. would receive in the trade if they steer clear of Anthony.”
NBA trade rumors citing Carmelo Anthony jumping to Boston, after all, appear dead in the water.
“An NBA source said Celtics coach Brad Stevens would embrace coaching Anthony, but president of basketball operations Danny Ainge has rejected any deal,” noted the Boston Globe. “That hasn’t stopped the Knicks from scouting Celtics players just in case Boston is willing to become part of a trade.”
According to that same NBA trade rumors report, the Knicks have been scouting Celtics’ players in the hopes of identifying some talent they would like to acquire in a deal in return for Anthony.
For its own part, the Clippers are believed to have a lot of interest in bringing in Anthony from New York. The two teams, FanSided noted, have been in intense talks to identify a third team that would accommodate such a deal — that is where the Celtics could come into play — although Los Angeles has indicated that it would not be willing to tear up too much of its talent in order to allow the transaction to go down.
According to NBA trade rumors, “That deal would likely not include [power forward] Blake Griffin, [point guard] Chris Paul or [center] DeAndre Jordan,” FanSided noted. “Instead, players such as [shooting guard / point guard] Jamal Crawford and [point guard / shooting guard / small forward] Austin Rivers have been mentioned as possible returns.”
For his own part, conflicts with team management and some on-the-court struggles have helped make Carmelo Anthony more expendable to the Knicks, who are just 21-28 this season and 11th in the Eastern Conference.
Statistically, however, Carmelo is doing okay, averaging 23.1 points per game in 48 games, with an average of 33.9 minutes per game this season.
It is that kind of scoring presence, many believe, that leads them to question why the Celtics would not be interested in adding Carmelo Anthony for themselves. Boston could, for example, use the star to help take some pressure to score off of its current star Isaiah Thomas. A potential trade package involving power forward/center Amir Johnson, small forward Jae Crowder, and/or small forward/power forward Jonas Jerebko could potentially be enough to land the team either Anthony himself or a few of the aforementioned Clippers’ players in a multi-team deal.
Regardless of Carmelo Anthony’s ultimate destination, however, one thing seems all but certain in the ever changing landscape of the NBA.
NBA trade rumors will only continue to heat up regarding the Knicks’ star heading toward the league’s trade deadline on February 23.
[Featured Image by Michael Reaves/Getty Images]