New York Knicks Trade Deadline: 5 Season-Saving Trades the Knicks Can Still Make

Dan Favale@@danfavaleFeatured ColumnistMarch 15, 2012

New York Knicks Trade Deadline: 5 Season-Saving Trades the Knicks Can Still Make

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    The New York Knicks dismantled the Portland Trail Blazers Wednesday night, but there is still work to be done.

    Even before Mike D'Antoni's departure, the Knicks were a team in turmoil, in need of a complete turnaround. Or, perhaps, another roster shake-up.

    The Knicks took advantage of a Blazers team that was in worse shape than they were, and that's not reason enough for a victory lap.

    New York has entered an unnecessary race for the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot, a reality that may propel them to explore outside solutions before today's 3 p.m. trade deadline.

Carmelo Antony for Deron Williams

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    Mike D'Antoni was the lead advocate for a potential Deron Williams-Carmelo Anthony swap, according to's David Aldridge.

    Williams' presence would help alleviate the burden that is currently on Jeremy Lin's shoulders. It gives the Knicks three point guards to work with and gives Lin two of the most knowledgeable mentors in the game.

    Such a deal also allows the Knicks to move Landry Fields to the small forward slot and experiment with either Lin or Baron Davis at the shooting guard position.

    Relinquishing Anthony is a steep price to pay, yet it is a logical one at the same time. He has struggled within a rotation that has numerous offensive weapons, and may be best suited on a roster where he is the unquestionable go-to guy.

    For the New Jersey Nets, dealing Williams for Anthony provides stability. Williams can test the open market this summer, and if the Nets don't deal him, they run the risk of losing him for nothing.

    While this trade would definitely strengthen New York's offense, it's unlikely to go down. If it were, D'Antoni would still be standing on the sidelines.

Dwight Howard to New York Knicks

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    Dwight Howard has decided, yet again, to opt in for the last year of his contract, but until the deadline passes, he has proven anything is possible.

    The Knicks have been linked to Howard on multiple occasions, dating back to Stephen A. Smith's report that the two parties had discussed a deal that would have sent Amar'e Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler to Orlando in exchange for Howard.

    Stoudemire's lucrative contract remains uninsurable, though, and according to ESPN's Chris Broussard, a package of Carmelo Anthony and Chandler in exchange for Hedo Turkoglu and Dwight Howard is more the Magic's speed.

    The inclusion of Anthony and Chandler far exceeds any other return Orlando would receive for Howard. It keeps the team not only competitive, but within reach of title contention.

    For the Knicks, losing two stars is huge, but Howard's presence in the middle would more than make up for it. He and Stoudemire would form the best low-post tandem in the league and instantly allow New York to assume championship contender status.

    Currently, such a deal is more than unlikely to materialize. That said, the Knicks have until 3 p.m. to prove otherwise.

Amar'e Stoudemire to Atlanta Hawks

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    The Hawks have steadfastly maintained that Josh Smith isn't going anywhere, but they may be willing to part with the disgruntled star in return for bigger name.

    Now the the Mike D'Antoni era has ended, there is a real possibility that Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony become at odds.

    Anthony essentially helped show D'Antoni, the coach responsible for turning Stoudemire into an offensive juggernaut, the door. And that may not sit well with the power forward.

    While it would be difficult for the Knicks to convince Atlanta to take on another bloated contract, Stoudemire has already proven that he and Joe Johnson work well together from their days in Phoenix. The Hawks brass could be intrigued to see how such a pairing fairs once again.

    For the Knicks, Smith fits in better with Mike Woodson's defense-oriented system. He is skilled offensively as well, but doesn't command the ball the way Stoudemire does, leaving Anthony free to assume the majority of the touches.

    A straight-up swap does not meet NBA requirements, but Atlanta could send Kirk Hinrich, along with Smith to New York in exchange for Bill Walker and Stoudemire.

    It's a difficult accord to strike, but would undoubtedly be better for the Knicks in the long run if Anthony and Stoudemire are unable to cohabit.

Ramon Sessions to New York Knicks

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    As per usual, the Knicks were reportedly keeping an eye on Ramon Sessions' situation with the Cavaliers.

    While both Jeremy Lin and Baron Davis are healthy, Sessions provides further depth to the backcourt. He can play either the 1 or 2 positions and despite limited range, is a much more consistent shooter than the volatile J.R. Smith.

    The Knicks would likely have to compete with the Lakers for his services, though. New York's inability to offer a first-round pick puts them at a disadvantage, but if Los Angeles balks at including a first-rounder themselves, a package of Toney Douglas and Josh Harrellson gets the deal done.

    Douglas has gone from starter to bench warmer, and Harrellson, while a stud in Mike D'Antoni's system, is unlikely to flourish under Mike Woodson, whose offensive strategy does not call for a stretch 4.

Courtney Lee to the Big Apple

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    Courtney Lee has once again meandered his way into trade rumors, and the Knicks would be doing themselves a great service by making a play for the sharp-shooting guard.

    While the price for Lee has been too steep for many teams in the past, Houston could drop their asking price after he suffered a dislocated finger and torn ligament against the Bobcats Wednesday night.

    With the Rockets in need of an additional inside presence, a package of the seldom-used Toney Douglas and rookie Josh Harrellson once again meets league requirements here. Houston could use Douglas at both the 1 and 2 when needed, and snags a promising inside-out presence in Harrellson as well.

    The Knicks had hoped J.R. Smith would emerge as a savior on the perimeter, but he is having Carmelo Anthony-like problems from the outside.

    Lee is shooting over 41 percent from beyond the arc this season and would take advantage of the open looks that Smith, and even Landry Fields, have not been able to capitalize on.