Get 'Melo? Not By Shredding The Current Roster.
I'm just so tired of reading how Carmelo Anthony presents this streaking Knick team with an opportunity to improve dramatically in 2010-11 while at the same time shredding the current roster of parts that are contributing mightily to this recent run of 12 wins in 13 games.
With a much enhanced group, coach Mike D'Antoni's run, run, run system, aided mightily by a collective defensive presence or mindset that may or may not be of his making, is flowing, and that flow is heightened by an appropriate mix of players.
Is Carmelo Anthony a player who could thrive in this system, of course, but consider very seriously that he is: A) A free agent to come and as the season progresses has less and less motivation to sign an extension anywhere else when he knows big bucks are on the table from the Knicks for next year, (where he would get to live out a boyhood dream of playing in the Garden), and B) The essentially absurd upside of Danilo Gallinari who is just now figuring out that he can take the ball to the hoop and fling up virtually any old, ugly thing and still find himself on the free throw line where he is one of the NBA's preeminent marksmen.
Gallinari is 22-years-old, (after a very slow start he's averaging about 15 points a game). We're talking about a player who can be a dominant NBA scorer, better than middling rebounder and if nothing else, determined defender for the next 10-12 years.
Trading him away would be insanity. Trading him away in a package that might include sensational, heady freshman Landry Fields, (who will only continue to improve in leaps and bounds) and/or physical presence, and premium scorer Wilson Chandler would mean a pending straight jacket for the man in charge. If anything general manager Donnie Walsh has proven himself far too savvy to be pulled into a premature trade, (when a couple of months from now Anthony might become available for a song as Denver's options will be limited if 'Melo is unwilling to sign long term with any other team but the Knicks.)
The New Jersey or someday, someway Brooklyn Nets? Give me a break, Madison Square Garden is the mecca of NBA basketball even if it's been half asleep the past decade or so. Is 'Melo going to sign on in New Jersey when he can wait out the season and get with the fast improving Knicks?
No way. Maybe if the Lakers jumped in, that's the only other option for the slick scorer and his T.V. personality wife, La La, but that would require a whole lot of money and roster shifting, so in reality that's not happening, either.
So in the meantime folks, let's be calm, let's enjoy the emergence of this fast growing Knick team, and let's stop force-feeding the Carmelo Anthony dreams, (he's not going to score 25-30 a night in New York, last time I checked there's still only one ball to be circulated amongst the players), because as good as he is, that's how good Danilo Gallinari can end up being in a short enough period of time, and there's not a soul in New York who doesn't know the danger of swapping out young talent for an existing star that might only have another three or four years of top of the line game in him.
Look, if he falls in our laps this year, great, otherwise sign him for the big money next year, strengthen the length of the team and maybe the Knicks can win it all.
Blow up this years growing chemistry in what will amount to a crap shoot...better with 'Melo but without Gallinari and Fields or even Chandler. I don't think so, and I don't think Donnie Walsh does either.
In the meantime enjoy today's game! That's it for now.