The Carmelo Anthony saga continues as the NBA superstar and the New York Knicks are now rumored to be contemplating a trade to the Portland Trailblazers.
According to Bleacher Report, the Blazers are by far the “most realistic landing spot” for the perennial NBA All-Star. There is no official word yet from Melo or his camp if he is willing to waive his no-trade clause for a team other than the Houston Rockets. But rumor has it that Anthony may be forced to accept a trade to Portland if the Knicks refuse the assets being offered by the Rockets.
Houston has a decimated line-up after the blockbuster trade that brought Chris Paul to their fold. The only players that have value are Ryan Anderson, Trevor Ariza, and Eric Gordon. Anderson has been the most consistent name in trade rumors because of his hefty contract, which the Rockets are understandably trying to unload. The problem is that New York doesn’t want his contract and they already have someone who plays the same position as Anderson — Kristaps Porzingis.
Ariza, meanwhile, is a former Knick, so the possibility of a reunion with the New York faithful is always there. However, Ariza is not exactly a spring chicken at 32-years-old and the Knicks have already said that it aims to get younger as they rebuild the franchise.
As for Gordon, Houston is reportedly reluctant to part with him, as it will leave the Rockets’ bench even barer than it is now.
New York Daily News reported that Anthony was still “cautiously optimistic” that a trade to Houston would be finalized before Monday, the start of the Knicks training camp. Jason McIntyre of Fox Sports 1 tweeted that his camp is “trying a Hail Mary attempt” to get Anthony to the Rockets to complete a big three with Paul and James Harden. If this supposed last ditch effort fails, Melo will apparently waive his clause and go to Portland.
A Melo Anthony trade to Portland is actually an old rumor. Blazers stars Damian Lilliard and C.J. McCollum have been recruiting the NBA forward for quite some time now. McCollum fueled the rumor by tweeting a photo of Anthony sporting a Blazers jersey. Both players have claimed that Anthony is interested in playing for Portland.
A potential trade for Melo will likely force Portland to give up Moe Harkless, an upcoming forward from New York who starred at St. John’s. If this trade does happen, expect Portland to instantly go up the ratings. A top three finish in the Western Conference is possible with Melo on board.
Of course, there’s always the possibility that Anthony will start training camp with New York and even play part or the entire 2017-18 NBA season in a Knicks uniform. Melo will need to wait a little bit longer if he wants to get out of New York via the free-agent route, however. Anthony will become an unrestricted free-agent in 2019.
[Featured Image by Mary Altaffer/AP Images]