Carmelo Anthony Trade Brings New Assets, More Speculation
After months of drawn-out speculation and hype, the Nuggets finally traded Carmelo Anthony on Monday night. However, the rumors didn't end when the Nuggets agreed to send Melo to New York.
Multiple reports indicate that the Nuggets are still looking to deal some of the players they received from the Knicks in the Melo deal.
Once the NBA approves the deal with New York, the Nuggets will receive point guard Raymond Felton, forwards Danilo Gallinari and Wilson Chandler, center Timofey Mozgov, a 2014 first-round pick, and two additional second-round picks. In addition to Anthony, the Nuggets will give up point guard Chauncey Billups, forward/center Shelden WIlliams, and forward Renaldo Balkman.
ESPN's Ric Bucher is reporting that the team is already shopping Gallinari to teams like the Los Angeles Clippers, Cleveland Cavaliers and Toronto Raptors. Even the New Jersey Nets, who were the Knicks' primary competitor in the race for Melo, are reportedly discussing a trade for Gallinari.
ESPN's Chris Broussard tweeted on Tuesday that the Los Angeles Clippers are dangling a first-round pick for Gallinari.
Meanwhile, many are suggesting that the Nuggets, who have been grooming Ty Lawson to be the team's point guard of the future, are viewing Felton strictly as trade bait. Asked by the Denver Post immediately after the news of the Melo trade broke, George Karl said that Lawson would "probably" start over Felton if both stuck around.
One report has the Nuggets, Nets, and Dallas Mavericks discussing a three-way trade that would send Nets Guard Devin Harris to Dallas, Felton and Mozgov to New Jersey, and two first-round picks to Denver.
Chandler may leave as a free agent after his contract expires at the end of the year.
The trade is also expected to impact the immediate futures of several long-time Nuggets. ESPN's Marc Stein reports that the Nuggets' number one concern--now that the Melo situation has been dealth with--is signing starting center Nene to contract extension. The team reportedly wants to sign the Brazilian to an extension by June 30, but would seek a trade if talks don't seem fruitful.
The Nuggets have not stated their intentions regarding any of their new players, but any transactions would have to take place before the Thursday trading deadline. For all anyone knows for certain, the team could hang on to all of its new assets. After all, Karl reportedly pushed the New York trade because he thought it gave the team the best chance to make the playoffs this year.