Seven years and 500 games later and it is seeming more and more likely that Carmelo Anthony’s days in Denver are numbered.
Maybe it was the Denver Nuggets firing the majority of their front office or it was the lack of adding a big man or it was that Denver wasn’t in the limelight enough for La La’s or Carmelo’s liking, unlike other cities like Houston, New York or Los Angeles. But the bottom line is it is time for the Nuggets and Anthony to part ways. However, it is kind of ironic that the duo was engaged for six years and the summer they get married is the summer they want to split Denver.
And while original rumors stated that he’d only like to play for the New York Knicks, but more recent reports have listed five different squads that Anthony may even sign an extension with and a few that have assets that are intriguing for the Nuggets.
CHARLOTTE: WHAT CAN THEY OFFER ANTHONY? Reports out of Yahoo said the Bobcats are sleepers because of their Brand Jordan shoes. It is also probably appealing to play for the best player ever, despite Michael Jordan being a below-average owner and also playing for a coach like Larry Brown carry some weight. Can this team compete? You never doubt Brown as a coach or Anthony as a player, especially when he is teamed with Stephen Jackson.
WHAT CAN THEY OFFER THE NUGGETS? They can’t offer the Nuggets much more than Gerald Wallace, draft picks and maybe Gerald Henderson. Wallace is tempting, probably because of the way he plays the game. He doesn’t have nearly Anthony’s offense, but is the best rebounding small forward and one of the better perimeter defenders in the NBA.
MOST REALISTIC TRADE: Gerald Wallace, Nazr Mohammed, Gerald Henderson and draft pick for Carmelo Anthony
Not the most desirable trade, but Wallace would definitely upgrade the Nuggets defense.
CHANCES OF A TRADE: 5 percent
CHICAGO: WHAT CAN THEY OFFER ANTHONY? While Chicago doesn’t carry the same publicity as New York or Los Angeles, it puts Anthony in the same class as Michael Jordan just by him putting on a Bulls jersey. And it teams Anthony up with one of the top point guards in the League, Derrick Rose and a talented big man in Carlos Boozer. It also sends Carmelo and La La back East. Can this team compete? Definitely, it sky-rockets the Bulls to among the top-three or four team in the East.
WHAT CAN THEY OFFER THE NUGGETS? The Bulls will no doubtable offer Luol Deng, who isn’t even close to at Anthony’s level but is still a good player, and Chicago would either offer power forward Taj Gibson and forward James Johnson or center Joakim Noah. Gibson had a very impressive rookie season, while Johnson struggled in his first season. However, Noah would be the Nuggets top option, due to him being a center and already has fulfilled his spot in the League.
MOST REALISTIC DEAL: Deng, Gibson, Johnson and a pair of draft picks (Chicago and rights to Charlotte).
Not the best deal the Nuggets could get, but not the worst ever. Deng is a good player, but he can’t carry a team like Anthony can. He’s a solid option, but not a No. 1 option. It is also doubtful that Noah would be included, because he is another member of the future of the Bulls.
CHANCES OF DEAL: 15 percent, not the number one choice for Anthony or the Nuggets.
HOUSTON: WHAT CAN THEY OFFER ANTHONY? The Rockets have a talented big man like Yao Ming to play with, and also the popularity that comes with playing with Yao. Do the Rockets have the pieces to win? Probably not as good as other teams.
WHAT CAN THEY OFFER THE NUGGETS? They can’t offer the same appeal as the other teams in the list, no high draft picks or uber-talented young players. However, they can offer the Nuggets an assortment of players that in the long run can play in the NBA. A package would most likely include Shane Battier, Kevin Martin, Jordan Hill, Chase Budinger, Patrick Patterson, (and/or) Courtney Lee and a draft pick (or two). The Nuggets would probably have to include J.R. Smith to make salaries work, but Martin is a more consistent version of Smith, Battier is only useful if the Nuggets are competitive. Hill, Budinger, Patterson and Lee are all young talented players, with Patterson carrying the most potential.
MOST REALISTIC DEAL: Battier, Martin, Patterson, Budinger and Hill for Carmelo Anthony and JR Smith
This is probably the most difficult deal to get done. The Rockets have a variety players at the same talent level to offer, but it is just a matter of who.
CHANCES OF A TRADE: 5 percent, it just doesn’t seem like the right fit for Anthony or the Nuggets.
LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS: WHAT CAN THEY OFFER ANTHONY? The City of Angeles carries the same appeal of New York, it gives LaLa and Carmelo a chance to shine and rub shoulders with the stars. It also gives Anthony a chance to improve his popularity and make a name for himself with the Clippers. Could they compete? Depends on what they give up. If they can team Anthony up with Blake Griffin and Baron Davis, they have a trio that could breathe some life in the other Los Angeles team.
WHAT CAN THEY OFFER THE NUGGETS? Their most tempting asset is the rights to the Minnesota pick (from the
Marko Jaric/Sam Cassell trade) that is unprotected after the 2011 Draft. Eric Gordon is another piece that they would most likely have to be added. While Gordon isn’t a star, he is one of the more talented young players in the League. They also have their top pick from 2009, Griffin, who hasn’t played a game yet but has potential to be a star in the League. However, it is hard to see Anthony signing an extension with the Clippers without Griffin on the team. Chris Kaman, who quietly made the All-Star team last year and still is youthful enough to have a good career in the NBA, is a nice trade chip for the Nuggets.
MOST REALISTIC TRADE: Kaman, Gordon, Al-Farouq Aminu and the rights to the Minnesota pick for Anthony.
The Clippers can have their own talented trio to build around and the Nuggets get an All-Star Center, two young stars and a pick that is almost guaranteed to be top five in the 2012.
CHANCES OF A DEAL: 30 percent, a good fit for Anthony and a great fit for the Nuggets.
NEW JERSEY: WHAT CAN THEY OFFER ANTHONY? Well to start with they are owned by Jay-Z and they are on the verge of moving to Brooklyn, which just happens to be close to where La La is from and helps the business side of Anthony as he teams up with Jay-Z to make the Nets a more competitive team. Can they compete? No doubt, new pieces (Anthony Morrow, Johan Petro and Travis Outlaw) to go with their new coach (Avery Johnson). Add Anthony to that team with Brook Lopez and this is a playoff squad in the East.
WHAT THEY CAN OFFER THE NUGGETS? The Nets do have picks to offer the Nuggets (rights to Golden State’s and their own), but their main trade chip is their young, 19-year-old big man Derrick Favors, who is a man-child. He is built like Dwight Howard, but has potential to be another Antonio McDyess or Al Horford. They also have their top draft pick from last year Terrence Williams, who is matched by few athletically and has potentially be one of the top perimeter defenders in the NBA. The Nets also need to add a veteran like Devin Harris, Troy Murphy or Outlaw to make the salaries work.
MOST REALISTIC TRADE: Derrick Favors, Troy Murphy, Terrence Williams and a pair of draft picks (their own and rights to Golden State’s pick).
Favors and Ty Lawson would be a good duo to build around, Williams is a young player and Murphy is a double-double candidate. However, is that a good enough replacement for Anthony?
CHANCES OF A DEAL: 30 percent, a good fit for both Anthony and the Nuggets.
NEW YORK: WHAT CAN THEY OFFER ANTHONY? The question is what can’t they offer Anthony? They are the center of the world and gives Anthony a chance to improve his popularity on the floor and off of it. It also moves La La and Carmelo closer to family and it puts them where they want to live. On paper, Amar’e Stoudemire and Anthony would be the most ideal duo. However, in real life the duo would struggle defensively. Can they compete? With Anthony on the squad any team can compete, but the Knicks probably wouldn’t live up to expectations.
WHAT CAN THEY OFFER THE NUGGETS? They can’t offer the Nuggets as much as the other teams on this list. Their main chip is Danilo Gallinari, who is like a young Toni Kukoc. Anthony Randolph is another option, but the Knicks haven’t made him available – yet. Wilson Chandler has been added, but more as a replacement for Gallinari. The only other piece they can offer is Eddy Curry’s expiring contract and that isn’t too appealing to the Nuggets.
MOST REALISTIC TRADE: Danilo Gallinari, Anthony Randolph, Wilson Chandler and Eddy Curry for Anthony.
This all depends on if the Knicks are willing to add Randolph or not and if the Nuggets are willing to accept a trade far below what other teams may offer.
CHANCES OF A TRADE: 15 percent, it is the place where Anthony wants to end up, but not the package the Nuggets would want in return.
Topics: Al Horford, Al-Farouq Aminu, Antonio McDyess, Avery Johnson, Baron Davis, Blake Griffin, Brook Lopez, Carlos Boozer, Carmelo Anthony, Charlotte Bobcats, Chase Budinger, Chicago Bulls, Chris Kaman, Courtney Lee, Denver Nuggets, Derrick Favors, Derrick Rose, Devin Harris, Eric Gordon, Gerald Henderson, Gerald Wallace, Houston Rockets, J.R. Smith, James Johnson, Joakim Noah, Jordan Hill, Kevin Martin, Los An, Los Angeles Clippers, Luol Deng, Michael Jordan, Nazr Mohammed, New Jersey Nets, Patrick Patterosn, Shane Battier, Stephen Jackson, Taj Gibson, Terrence Williams, Troy Murphy, Yao Ming