This is the pipe dream of all pipe dreams.
I’m not even a Knicks fan, but someone has to take control of this toxic situation. All the talk of trading Melo not trading Melo, they are never going to recoup all that was lost from the trade that went down in February of 2011. “The Nuggets traded Melo to the New York Knicks tonight, a league source said. Denver gets Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Danilo Gallinari, Timofey Mozgov, the Knicks 2014 first-round draft pick, the Warriors’ 2012 second-round pick, the Warriors’ 2013 second-round pick and $3 million in cash.” That is a ton for 1 player and the Knicks aren’t getting that back no way and no how. So instead of trying to unload Melo to either the cap strapped Cavs or the asset poor Rockets (even though the GM there pulls rabbits out of hats on the regular), I am proposing an alternate reality. TRADE FOR LEBRON! The Cavs have hit their ceiling. Did they pay attention to what happened in 5 games against the Warriors? It’ll be a sweep next year. Who should the Cavs target in a potential trade? Kristaps Porzingis. The NBA Trade Machine accepts this trade as successful. How would Knicks’ fans like to see this on the bottom line: The New York Knicks acquire Lebron James from the Cleveland Cavaliers for F Kristaps Porzingis, C Joakim Noah, and F Lance Thomas. From the Cavs’ perspective this makes sense. You have a young unicorn to put with Love and Kyrie. Also you are working on a separate deal with Houston to trade Iman Shumpert. Swapping out role players for role players. Players need a change of scenery sometimes and getting someone from a team that made the playoffs in the West isn’t a bad thing. From the Knicks’ perspective this is a no brainer. Pairing Lebron and Melo is half of the banana boat gang and another piece has been posting snapchat videos about how lonely he is. I feel as though Dwayne Wade is going to be bought out by Chicago and if/when that happens New York becomes the number one landing spot for Wade. The trade machine showed an 11 win improvement based on that one move for Lebron. So that get the Knicks to 42-40. We didn’t start this to make a 7 seed in the East. Adding Wade for nothing but money adds another 6 wins. Now we are up to 48-34. That puts us right in the 4-5 matchup. Now having Wade, James, and Anthony on the same team guarantees nothing. But, the East is even weaker now since more and more good players are heading that way. Another trade proposal in addition to the other moves is necessary to make this a more formidable roster. It is in the rumors that Derrick Rose and Milwaukee have mutual interest, and Detroit is hard capped and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is a RFA. Here is the deal: In a 3-team trade the New York Knick acquire Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Greg Monroe, The Detroit Pistons acquire Michael Beasley, and the Milwaukee Bucks acquire Derrick Rose. According to the trade machine we added another win which brings us to the 49-50 range. The trade machine can only look at one move at a time. So let us gather what we have done in a single roster and see what the analytics say about it. Rotational Depth (these are the dudes getting the most minutes per night):
Guards-Dwyane Wade, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Courtney Lee, Chasson Randle, Ron Baker
Forwards-Lebron James, Carmelo Anthony
Bigs-Greg Monroe, Kyle O’Quinn, Willy Hernangomez
That’s a 10-man rotation that can compete with ANY team in the NBA. We know that Caldwell-Pope and Lee are shooters: Caldwell-Pope shot 35% and Lee shot 40% from distance last season. You could start both of them with James and Anthony and Monroe and bring Wade in as the 6th man. Can you imagine Wade as the 6th man on this team? Baker and Randle would have to improve their shooting, especially with the open looks they would be getting playing on this roster. Greg Monroe decided to become a defensive and rebounding monster last season and the Bucks benefitted from this player. For this team, in the weakened East, I’m seeing 60 wins as a lock. Maybe 65 if things break right. Predicting the playoffs after this team is constructed and peering into the rest of the league’s rumors sets up as follows:
1 New York
I think the Knicks would set themselves up for a good 2-3 years of Eastern Conference dominance with these moves and possibly more. Keys would be not shipping out draft picks, sign ring chasers on the cheap, and health. Health would probably be number one on my concern list but its fun to dream isn’t it?