According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony is open to waiving his no-trade clause in order to join the Cavaliers or Rockets. In either situation, Anthony would be joining forces with a member of the Banana Boat crew — be it LeBron James or Chris Paul.
Wojnarowski’s report doesn’t indicate how advanced talks between the Cavs and Knicks are. Per Wojnarowski, New York wants “significant assets” in return for Anthony and does not want to take on longterm salary commitments to veteran players.
For Cleveland to acquire Anthony, they would have to make the money work, as Anthony is making $26.2 million next season. To do so, only a select number of players fit the bill. LeBron is untradeable in any scenario, as is Kyrie Irving. That means, in order to land Anthony, Cleveland would need to deal one or more of Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson, Iman Shumpert or J.R. Smith. Love for Anthony works straight up, but it was a deal Cleveland was previously unwilling to do under David Griffin. It also doesn’t make the Cavs a better team. And would the Cavs considering putting Thompson in any trade talks?
One deal that could work would be one centered around Shumpert and Channing Frye (two ex-Knicks) for Anthony. But would the Knicks actually do that? Would the Cavs have to sweeten the deal with their 2021 first round pick and/or Cedi Osman, the team’s two remaining assets? Is that even enough? And does a deal even make sense when Anthony could be bought out? These are the Cavs, currently being led by quasi acting GM Koby Altman and owner Dan Gilbert, will have to answer.