DionRabouin.com (sort of)

The seven things about the Carmelo trade that no one is talking about

Posted in Sports by dionrabouin on February 22, 2011

1.       Chauncey doesn’t want to play in New York. Everyone is talking about Chauncey joining the Knicks as if it’s going to last. It won’t. The whole reason the Nuggs traded him was because he has a $14 million option on his contract and they didn’t want to pay it. My guess is the Knicks will either buy him out this season or cut him at the end of the season or before next season starts. That is the absolute longest he stays in NYC. He doesn’t want to be there and he’ll probably request the buyout.

 

This also bodes well for the Knicks, because without Chauncey’s contract, they will again be able to compete to get an elite third player. If they can shed some salary before 2012, they can realistically be in position to land CP3 or Deron Williams or Dwight Howard, if either are willing to take a $2-5 million/year pay cut. Most “experts” think any would have to settle for a cut of $10 million/year, but with Chauncey’s salary coming off the books, that’s not the case.

 

2.       The Nuggets got a trade exception and about $25 million to work with. That makes the Nuggets THE team to call to make a deal next year. They got a raw deal on the 2014 draft pick, but with two extra second-rounders in the next two years they could be in very good position with the new CBA to trade for guys like OJ Mayo or Rudy Gay or Jamal Crawford or some other player from a team that is looking to shed some cap space for a 2012 free agent. The Nuggets will probably be the third team in any discussions should Howard, Paul or Williams decide they want to test the waters (and it’s almost certain that Paul and Williams will).

3.       The Nets can’t trade two first round draft picks for the two Knicks players the Nuggets got. All the “experts” were saying the Nuggets weren’t interested in the trade, but even if they were it’s not a trade the league would allow. The Nets are currently above the cap (well, basically right at it. They’re about $200k over) which means they can’t trade picks straight up for players. That would put them further over the cap via trade, which is disallowed by league rules.

4.       It’s not hard to pick up defensive players via free agency and the draft, especially when you’re the New York Knicks and have Melo and Amar’e on your team. Yeah, NY gave up a lot of young talent and has no defenders, but those guys aren’t hard to come by. Right now there are about four elite defenders in the league (Howard, Kobe, KG, Artest), but there’s a stockpile of decent to pretty good defenders (Shane Battier, Anderson Varajeo, Thabo Sefolosha,Tayshaun Prince, Raja Bell, Matt Barnes, etc. etc.). Stick two defense-first guys out there with a PG who can facilitate with Melo and Amar’e and the Knicks will be fine. This is where GMs really earn their money.

5.       The Nuggets still have KMart’s expiring contract to deal (for the life of me I don’t understand why he hasn’t been dealt yet) which will provide $16.5 million in cap space for some lucky suitor who thinks they can land a big fish next year. This is especially important now that they have Mozgov, Chandler, Harrington, Birdman and Ely (all big men who can play the 4 or 5) riding the pine. KMart’s contract plus a couple picks is pretty good trade bait. I could see the Clippers, Phoenix, Atlanta or Dallas being interested right away. Possibly even Detroit. I’m not saying they ARE interested, just that it would make sense for them to look to deal.

6.       Raymond Felton is a very good player. He’s faded down the stretch this season, but he was solid before coming to the Knicks and he was great the first quarter of the season. He’ll be able to run with this offense and he can play the two guard while Ty Lawson plays point if the Nuggets want to go small (very, very small). He’s averaging 17 points and 9 assists this season. Plus he’s only 26. Why is no one talking about Raymond Felton? Although, if the Nets wanted to trade him straight up for Harris, I would jump all over that.

7.       Corey Brewer is a good player, damnit, and the Nuggets should have fought to get him. It really sucks that the Knicks got him, because he’s very similar to Melo, except that he can’t score nearly as well and he actually tries on defense. Their games are pretty similar, though.

 

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