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New York Knicks Acquire 'Melo; Still Not A Title Contender

The New York Knicks acquired Carmelo Anthony as part of a 12-player blockbuster trade yesterday. While it will bring excitement to Madison Square Gardner, the trade still leaves the Knicks as less than a title contender.

The trade finally became official last night and the New York Knicks acquired their second star. Many Knicks fans are happy that their team was able to trade for one of the leagues best scorers. Afterall, he was the player Knicks fans wanted since Stoudemire signed last offseason.

However, I warn everyone not to get to excited. This deal by no means makes the Knicks a title contender. It has the potential to make them a very good team, but not a great team.

Owner James Dolan and General Manager Donnie Walsh, along with head coach Mike D’Antoni were understandably reluctant to make this deal. In the end however, they decided it was worth it. Risky? You bet.

New York lands Carmelo Anthony, an aging point guard in Chauncey Billups, role players Renaldo Balkman, Sheldon Williams, and Anthony Carter from the Denver Nuggets. The Knicks four very talented young players, Raymond Felton, Wilson Chandler, Danilo Gallinari, and center Timofey Mozgov to Denver along with three draft picks.

New York gives up three of the teams top five scorers, as well as it’s new starting center. Felton had an excellent first half for the Knicks, averaging 17.1 points and 9 assists while running the fast pace offense. The veteran Billups, who is not known for his up and down game, will handle the ball for D’Antoni’s team.

Chandler and Gallinari are young players with star potential. Chandler was averaging 16.4 points and just under six rebounds per game for the Knicks.

You trade all this for a young-dimensional star? That’s not even taking into account the three draft picks the Knicks are also giving up. Second round picks in 2012 and ’13, and a first round pick in 2014.

Its understood that everyone wants the high profile player, the big time scorers in the NBA and that’s what the Knicks are getting in Anthony. However, is it worth dismantling the team?

New York was one of the most improved teams in the league this season, led by Felton, Chandler, and Stoudemire. Why give up so much in a deal that does not put the team over the edge?

Both Carmelo and the Knicks could have verbally agreed to wait until the offseason, allowing the Knicks to keep their young pieces to the puzzle. A team of Stoudemire, Anthony, Felton, and Chandler sounds a lot better than Soudemire, Anthony, and Billups. Doing that however could have cost Anthony a great deal of money as the NBA labor negotiations are unstable right now and a lockout remains a possibility.

In a seperate deal yesterday, New York sent Eddy Curry and Anthony Randolph to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Corey Brewer.

In this offense, a point guard is very important. Will Knicks fans be ok with waiting until 2012 when Deron Williams, Chris Paul, and Dwight Howard become free agents? Getting Williams or Paul would put the Knicks among the elite teams in the NBA.

Right now, New York is not an elite team. I’m almost tempted to say they were better off before making the trade for ‘Melo.

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