Will Carmelo Anthony Help OKC Atop the Western Conference?
Is the NBA ready for this three-headed monster?
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma — Before the 2017-18 NBA season, well-respected players in the league made this year’s trades probably the most talked about deals in NBA history. From Jimmy Butler going to the Minnesota Timberwolves to Dwayne Wade going to the Cleveland Cavaliers to team back up with LeBron James.
Nonetheless, the best trade of the year has to be the three-way deal the Oklahoma City Thunder proposed to acquire 33-year-old forward, Carmelo Anthony. On Sept. 25, the New York Knicks agreed to trade Anthony for center Enes Kanter, forward Doug McDermott, and Chicago’s 2018 second-round draft pick, according to NBA.com.
“This is a deal we feel works for both this franchise and Carmelo. We thank him for his seven seasons in a Knicks uniform and all that he accomplished off the court for the City of New York by using his platform to address social issues,” said Knicks president Steve Mills.
Both organizations seem satisfied with their new acquisition, especially Anthony. Since the 33-year-old had some in-house discrepancy with the Knicks. Over the last 10 years, the Knicks had five coaches and their average deals only lasted two years.
Invaluable trades and inadequate draft picks plagued the Knicks from winning a championship since 1973. There is even documented moments when Anthony had issues with Hall of Fame coach Phil Jackson and the Knicks’ management team.
Anthony openly expressed that he wanted to be traded since giving the Knicks seven years of career and have nothing to show for it. While on the Knicks, the Brooklyn native averaged 24.7 points, scoring 10,186 points, making him the seventh highest all-time leading scorer in the team’s history, according to NBA.com. On Jan. 14, 2014 Anthony scored a career-high 62 points against the Charlotte Bobcats at the Madison Square Garden, which is the greatest single-game scoring performance in team annals.
“We will continue to focus on this team looking forward towards the immediate and long-term future. As we have said recently, this is a new beginning for the New York Knicks,” said Mills.
Anthony has moved on in search of a chance to play for a ring, and it seems that he is content with his decision. Joining forces with Russell Westbrook and Paul George, allows Anthony to play basketball without so much pressure.
“Me and Russ became closer and closer over the years. He was a big part, he was a big reason why I wanted to come here. To see his loyalty to the city, to this organization, what he was able to do on the court — I wanted to be a part of that,” said Anthony.
Now, he has options because last year, Westbrook had the best individual season in NBA history and Paul George led the Indiana Pacers to the Eastern Conference Finals multiple times. OKC has the opportunity to have the best big-three tandem of this NBA generation.
“Adding PG was just another reason why I wanted to come here,” Anthony continued. “Our relationship, our friendship, our respect for one another as basketball players was the reason that I wanted to play alongside him and have an opportunity to compete for a championship and kind of just bring some more energy.”
So let’s see if they can get it done.