Carmelo Anthony Trade Rumors: Knicks Have Reportedly Discussed Kevin Love Swap

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJanuary 25, 2017

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 30: Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks handles the ball against Kevin Love #0 of the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first quarter at Quicken Loans Arena on October 30, 2014 in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Jason Miller/Getty Images

With Carmelo Anthony's future a constant source of intrigue, the New York Knicks have reportedly explored potential trade avenues for the nine-time All-Star.

According to ESPN.com's Marc Stein and Chris Haynes, the Knicks attempted to discuss a swap involving Anthony and Kevin Love with the Cleveland Cavaliers. However, the Cavs declined to take the negotiations any further.

CBSSports.com's Matt Moore and The Ringer's Jason Concepcion didn't think Cavaliers general manager David Griffin gave much thought to pulling the trigger on any deal:

From Cleveland's perspective, the trade would've made far more sense a year ago, when Love was struggling to fit in with the team. Since then, has seemingly found his comfort zone with the Cavs. This season, he's averaging 20.5 points and 10.9 rebounds a game, and his three-point percentage has improved from 36.0 percent in 2015-16 to 37.4 percent heading into Wednesday's action.

Following the Cavs' defeat Monday against the New Orleans Pelicans—their sixth this month—LeBron James voiced his frustration with the team's recent performance. He also declared Cleveland needs reinforcements.

"We need a f--king playmaker," James said, per ESPN.com's Dave McMenamin. "I'm not saying you can just go find one, like you can go outside and see trees. I didn't say that."

Although James may have a different definition of a playmaker, it's a description few would use for Anthony. He has been primarily a scorer for the bulk of his NBA career, and he's in a five-way tie for 224th in assist ratio (12.0) in 2016-17, per ESPN.com.

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With Love, James and Kyrie Irving on the squad—in addition to J.R. Smith, who's currently sidelined with a fractured thumb—the Cavs already have more than enough scorers.

On the other side, it's little surprise the Knicks would examine every avenue regarding Anthony's future.

The New York Daily NewsFrank Isola reported Jan. 17 that Anthony met with Knicks president Phil Jackson to reaffirm his commitment the team. But on Jan. 21, Newsday's Al Iannazzone reported Anthony would consider waiving his no-trade clause if the team's front office expressed to him a desire to trade him.

The Knicks would be better off in the long term building around 21-year-old Kristaps Porzingis rather than expecting Anthony, who turns 33 in May, to deliver short-term success.

Unless Love's situation with the Cavs deteriorates, though, it's doubtful New York can land the three-time All-Star.