New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony will only waive his no-trade clause if he were dealt to the Houston Rockets.
His wish actually might come true sooner rather than later.
A report by Frank Isola of the New York Daily News revealed that Anthony’s representation is “cautiously optimistic” that he will be traded before Monday:
“Two weeks ago, Carmelo’s wife, La La, said the family thought a trade would have been completed by now. Mentally, Carmelo and his family have moved on to Houston. Reality is another story.”
The 10-time All-Star has been the subject of trade rumors for most of the summer, especially after the free agency window opened up in July.
He approached the Knicks to buy out the remaining two years, $54 million of his contract in late June. While then-president Phil Jackson was ready to oblige, Knicks owner James Dolan was not, resulting in Jackson’s departure from the team.
Despite Steve Mills taking over and the entry of new general manager Scott Perry, Anthony’s desire to leave the team didn’t change. However, they would be on his own terms.
Anthony made it be known that he would only allow a trade to either the defending Eastern Conference champion Cleveland Cavaliers or the Houston Rockets, who added All-Star point guard Chris Paul to a lineup that already features MVP runner-up James Harden.
But after Kyrie Irving’s drama that resulted in him being shipped to the Boston Celtics, Anthony took Cleveland off his list.
Unfortunately for Anthony and the Knicks, the Rockets are just not a good trade partner.
They shipped seven players off to the Los Angeles Clippers in order to get Paul and the remaining assets they have are either underwhelming or make no sense in bringing on.
The best Houston has to offer is power forward Ryan Anderson, who is making over $60 million over the final three years of his contract. Not only is that an unnecessary contract to bring on given the rebuilding status of this team, but Anderson wouldn’t have a place to play on this team.
Kristaps Porzingis will hold down the power forward position for the next decade, at least, leaving the team with nowhere to put the fairly one-dimensional big man.
The Knicks and Anthony’s best hope of getting a deal done was getting a third team involved, allowing Houston to get rid of Anderson’s contract while the Knicks get something better in return.
If Anthony’s camp is optimistic that a deal is close to getting done, then a third team might have been found.