4 Realistic Options for NY Knicks to Pair with Carmelo Anthony

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4 Realistic Options for NY Knicks to Pair with Carmelo Anthony
Mark Duncan/Associated Press

With half of the NBA season in the books, it's clear now that the New York Knicks, as constructed this past offseason, are worlds away from championship caliber and may have a hard time competing for a mere playoff berth in a sorry Eastern Conference. 

The team will certainly have a decision to make following this season when Carmelo Anthony is set to hit the open market for the first time in his career. Make no mistake, he'll be chasing a max-level contract. It'll be up to Steve Mills and the team's front office to decide if Anthony is worth the full $129 million maximum.

If they do decide to re-up with Anthony for the next five years, the Knicks will certainly need to shake up the core, as it's clear the current nucleus' run capped out last season with a second-round ouster. 

With Amar'e Stoudemire's team-high $23.4 million—second highest in the NBA for 2014-15 behind Kobe Bryant—the Knicks won't be able to make a severe free-agency splash this summer. But, through trading and low-key summer pickups, there's a chance to make a 'Melo-led Knicks team a playoff contender in the immediate future. 

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