Tuesday, February 22, 2011

2/22 (Carmelo) Quickie

There are a lot of angles to cover in this Carmelo story.

*Right off the bat, I'd send you to the Quickish stream of analysis about Carmelo, mostly from the first two hours after the story broke last night. You will get a terrific survey of quick-hit takes and be able to consume them fast.

*Here is my top-level takeaway: The Knicks will not win a championship with Amare and Carmelo -- they probably won't make it out of the first round of the playoffs. And from all expert analysis, landing Chris Paul or Deron Williams in 2012 is wishful thinking.

And so what are the Knicks left with? Relevancy. And -- in an old Quickie maxim -- if you're not going to win a championship, relevancy isn't a terrible 2nd prize. The Knicks had already gotten more relevant with Amare; that gets doubled with Carmelo.

But Knicks fans are crazy if they think this will get them an NBA championship. It was the right move to make, but not necessarily competitively -- unless the competition you're really in is to matter in a sports landscape dominated by superstars.

*Did the Knicks give up too much? Probably not -- again, if the goal was to maximize the star power (which it seems to be).

*Let's be clear: Contrary to months-old reports, Carmelo would have absolutely taken the $65M from the Nets if the Knicks didn't come up with the winning offer. In the end, he wanted the money more than he wanted the location. That he got both is not a product of his design, but of James Dolan and Isiah Thomas paying whatever price they needed to get him.

*The Nuggets did AMAZING. Consider the recent history of superstars changing locations -- either the teams are blinded into thinking the stars would re-sign with them or they get fleeced for pennies on the dollar. Denver got back maximum value for Carmelo -- and it's not pennies. They got three starter-quality players, a promising young center and a slew of draft picks (not to mention financial flexibility). Taking into account the respective contexts, I think the Nuggets did better than the Knicks.

*The Nets didn't get Carmelo, but -- then again -- they didn't mortgage the future (Derrick Favors, who still has huge All-Star upside, and a slew of draft picks, which could easily turn into an all-star talent). The notion that they won by gutting the Knicks' roster is overblown -- as much as I like it in theory; the Knicks only cared about the star power anyway. The brief rumor that the Nets were going to get Gallinari and Mozgov was exciting; it likely won't happen.

*Carmelo will reportedly wear No. 13 -- that's better than him wearing Bernard King's beloved No. 30; Melo had to have known that taking 30 would be a mistake. Good for him for recognizing it. The Melo-Amare Knicks (see what I did there?) will make their national-TV debut on Sunday night on ESPN against the Heat. Wow. Split the screen with the Oscars, I guess.

*On a personal note, I am not a Knicks fan but I do live in New York, and I am thrilled by the idea that Corey Brewer will be playing for the Knicks. I love Joakim Noah and Al Horford from those title-winning Florida teams, but Brewer was/is my favorite.

*I think we can all agree that the best part of all of this is that the Carmelo-Knicks trade saga is now over. In that detail, he unites all fans everywhere.

-- D.S.

1 comment:

Adrián said...

Dan, isn't Corey Brewer going to the Nuggets?