The two biggest deals at this year's trade deadline were the ones involving Carmelo Anthony and Deron Williams.
The Knicks gave up four starters to land 'Melo, while the Nets gave up one true starter and draft picks to land a much better player.
As soon as the deals went down, I wondered how the Knicks' front office felt about the Deron Williams trade.
Fast forward a month and the Knicks are a mess, while the Nets have a lot to be optimistic about.
This slideshow asks the question: Where would New York be had they acquired Deron Williams instead of Carmelo Anthony?
After losing to the Orlando Magic last night, the Knicks are 7-10 with Carmelo Anthony and have fallen under .500 on the year.
They've lost seven out of their last eight. The styles of Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire do not mesh. And a team that was already mediocre defensively, is now pitiful on that end.
New York is now in the seventh playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, which would have them taking on the Boston Celtics in the first round.
The chances of this team beating the Celtics in a seven-game series without home-court advantage are slim to none.
I'm not saying the Knicks can't get better in the future, but the "Melo + Amar'e" equation does not equal as much of a sure thing as a lot of the media made it out to be.
One of those guys will have to take a back seat (or at least the passenger's seat), and neither wants to do that.
Deron Williams has yet to find his shot in New Jersey, but he's still averaging 14 points and 12 assists per game as a member of the Nets.
More importantly, his presence has significantly boosted the production of both Brook Lopez and Kris Humphries.
Lopez is averaging 24 points and seven rebounds per game in the month of March (compared to 20 and six for the season).
Humphries is averaging 15 points and 17 rebounds a game this month (compared to 10 and 10 for the season).
Hard numbers aren't the only things starting to head in the right direction for this team.
There is an air of excitement in New Jersey that hasn't been there in years. Deron Williams is the kind of team player that a successful organization can build around, and the fans know that.
The Knicks gave up Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Danilo Gallinari, Timofey Mozgov, Eddy Curry Anthony Randolph and three draft picks to get Carmelo Anthony.
Talk about a huge price tag for one player (I know they got Billups too, but you and I both know New York is not planning any kind of future around him).
Compare that to what the New Jersey Nets gave up for Deron Williams. They sent Devin Harris, Derrick Favors and two draft picks to Utah for arguably the best point guard in the league.
If the Knicks hadn't been so consumed with the idea of having 'Melo, they may have discovered that they could get Williams for a much more affordable price.
New York could've offered comparable (and in my opinion, better) pieces to Utah.
Raymond Felton is more of a true point guard than Devin Harris. Derrick Favors is nothing but potential right now, while Danilo Gallinari has a ton of potential but is also producing right now.
New York also could have thrown in Anthony Randolph. He's an athletic, young power forward that many GMs still think will develop into a great player.
Plus, there's the three draft picks the Knicks could offer.
They're further in the future than the ones the Nets gave up, but Utah may have been willing to overlook that because the players the Knicks could have offered are better than the ones they got from New Jersey.
A deal of Deron Williams for Raymond Felton, Danilo Gallinari, Anthony Randolph and the picks would have made some sense for both teams.
If the Knicks hadn't been so consumed with the idea of getting 'Melo, they may have realized a better player (and fit for their team) was available.
Deron Williams and Amar'e Stoudemire could very well have developed into a better PG/PF combination than Steve Nash and Amare were.
Plus, the Knicks would still have a little bit of depth.
A starting lineup of Williams, Landry Fields, Wilson Chandler, Amar'e Stoudemire and Ronny Turiaf would be surging up the Eastern Conference standings right now.
Instead, New York is sliding (and Denver is doing the surging).
On a related note...