I was on vacation a couple of days ago and I’m saddened with the news of Carmelo Anthony leaving the New York Knicks for the Oklahoma City Thunder.
No, I’m not ragging on Anthony’s declining starpower. Well… maybe a little bit… especially when former New York brass Phil Jackson virtually threw his best player in the middle of the expressway to fend for himself. It’s like this… Oklahoma City is the vehicle that saved Anthony from getting hit by the fast-moving vehicles… but the vehicle he entered is not your typical vehicle.
Try googling FakeTaxi.
I guess OKC is a mere pit stop for the former Syracuse Orangeman (although you can say the same with Paul George). His no-trade clause is a double-edged sword and it took Doug McDermott, Enes Kanter, and a second round pick to relieve the Knicks of his being. He is still an all-star but he’s going to play alongside Russell Westbrook and Paul George and I don’t know if this is a good thing for Melo.
But then it also says a lot on the health of Westbrook. I have seen online reports with regards to his knee and perhaps he’s going to need all the help he could get. Sam Presti has done a masterful job in locking budget-friendly stars to pad up their problematic areas. If the Anthony experiment fails and George is going to use the place as a stopover, then he can just wrangle another set up of players to help Westbrook (although Westbrook might ask for a trade if those scenarios unfold).
Like I said, it’s unfortunate. I guess with the exception of Lebron James and perhaps Lonzo Ball (haha), playing for your home state is a nostalgia bit transitioning into a player’s worst nightmare. Stephon Marbury’s NBA career died as soon as he wore the Knicks’ colors. Ditto for Melo… no thanks to Phil Jackson. Dwyane Wade is not having a stellar time either especially with all the buyout talk.
The only solace for Anthony is his opportunity to win a NBA title. I know Golden State and Houston are better prediction options but Oklahoma City is far better than New York. Melo has the capacity to transform into a Peja Stojakovic but then losing one-half of the ‘Stache Brothers could have the new additions help on the inside.
Nonetheless, it gives Oklahoma City another superstar to compete against the heavyweights of the West and it gives New York time to focus on the development of Kristaps Porzingis.
All of a sudden, the notion of Porzingis as a Top 20 fantasy player is not a bad thought.