Report: Knicks could trade Carmelo Anthony to Clippers without receiving Chris Paul, Blake Griffin or DeAndre Jordan

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The Knicks are reportedly trying to trade Carmelo Anthony.

The Clippers might bite – if New York is OK not receiving Chris Paul, Blake Griffin or DeAndre Jordan.

Frank Isola of the New York Daily News:

The Knicks and Clippers are discussing a deal for Carmelo Anthony that does not include Chris Paul, Blake Griffin or DeAndre Jordan going to New York, the Daily News has learned.

The Knicks, according to a source, are open to trading Anthony to Los Angeles even if they don’t get one of the Clippers’ Big 3 in return.

All three of the Clippers’ stars are more valuable than Anthony. Doc Rivers should maintain a hard line on not trading any of the three for Anthony.

But a lesser package could make sense.

Any deal would likely involve two of J.J. Redick, Jamal Crawford and Austin Rivers. Their salaries are needed to match Anthony, who has a trade bonus that makes salary matching even more complex. The Clippers are over the luxury-tax line and facing a hard cap, and the Knicks are over the salary cap.

The Clippers should be reluctant to deal Redick, though. There’s a real case that his 3-and-D skills better complement the Clippers’ stars than Anthony’s scoring would. Another complication: 32-year-old Redick might not provide much value to the Knicks if they want to rebuild around Kristaps Porzingis.

The Clippers are short on assets with far more future than present value. They can guarantee sending only one future first-round pick, though they could structure a deal that allows another first-rounder to be dealt if they make the playoffs this year and in 2019. In any scenario, the Clippers can’t convey a pick until 2021 at the earliest. They also have Brice Johnson, Diamond Stone, the rights to No. 39 pick David Michineau and no second-rounder this year or next but an extra second-rounder from the Cavaliers in 2020.

Is there a package in those lackluster pieces that would intrigue the Knicks?

And would Anthony waive his no-trade clause to join the Clippers? He’s close with Paul and said he’d consider accepting a trade if the Knicks want to rebuild. Los Angeles isn’t his beloved New York, but it’s still a major market.

I’m still unconvinced the Knicks find suitable return in the Clippers’ offerings beyond their big three. And I’m unconvinced Anthony would allow a trade at all.

But this is much more plausible than many Anthony trade rumors.

Gordon Hayward’s agent says return this season unlikely

Associated Press
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Wednesday night in Boston Gordon Hayward underwent surgery to repair his dislocated ankle and fractured tibia suffered just five minutes into the season-opening game, a gruesome injury that put a pall over the rest of the night.

There had been hope from some Celtics fans that Hayward could return this season, likely for the playoffs, but now that the surgery is complete Hayward’s agent told Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN not to expect him back until next season.

This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who saw the injury. Hayward is in the first year of a four-year deal with the Celtics, they were always going to choose a cautious path rather than rush him back. Under Danny Ainge Boston has always taken the long view, even with all their moves this summer — specifically bringing in Hayward and Kyrie Irving — the target was to be the team set up for next as LeBron James and the Cavaliers faded. That plan does not change now.

Earlier in the day, Hayward had sent a video message out to Celtics fans thanking them for their support in the past 24 hours.

Without Hayward, the Celtics now will focus more on smaller lineups, rookie Jayson Tatum will get more run, as will Marcus Smart in his contract year. Jaylen Brown will be thrust into a more significant role. Also, Kyrie Irving will be asked to do more as the team’s second-best playmaker is now out for the season.

The Celtics will take a step back this season without Hayward, who was going to be crucial for them on both ends of the floor. That’s evidenced by their 0-2 start, falling to the Cavaliers and Bucks on the first couple nights of the season. Boston should still be a team well above .500 and in the playoffs, but they will not be quite the same this season.

Trail Blazers beat Suns by 48, biggest season-opening rout in NBA history

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Any controversy over C.J. McCollum‘s suspension for the season-opener should be put to rest. The Trail Blazers fared fine without him.

More than fine.

Portland beat the Suns, 124-76, Wednesday. The 48-point margin is the largest ever in a season opener, even as the Trail Blazers let a 58-point fourth-quarter lead dwindle.

Here are the most lopsided season-openers in NBA history (openers for both teams appearing twice):

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The 48-point defeat is also the Suns’ worst lost in franchise history, topping a 44-point loss to the Seattle SuperSonics in 1988. It could be a long year in Phoenix.

Marcus Smart and Matthew Dellavedova scrap (video)

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Marcus Smart and Matthew Dellavedova thrive on aggravating opponents, so when matched up, of course they aggravated each other.

Deduct points from Smart for pulling the hold-me-back charade behind a referee. Plus, Dellavedova’s Bucks beat Smart’s Celtics, 108-100.

Report: ‘Tremendous concern’ for Jeremy Lin’s knee injury

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The Nets’ projected record this season came under greater scrutiny when the Celtics traded Brooklyn’s unprotected first-round pick to the Cavaliers in the Kyrie Irving trade. After finishing third-to-last and last the previous two years, were the Nets poised to take a step forward, or would they convey a very high pick to the Cavs?

Jeremy Lin, who missed 46 games last season, getting healthy was a reason for optimism in Brooklyn and pessimism in Cleveland. But it appears the veteran guard could be out a while.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

Billy Reinhardt of Nets Daily:

If the injury is as bad as feared, what a bummer for Lin. He came to Brooklyn expecting to play a leading role on a developing team, and he just can’t stay healthy.

The Nets were probably more focused on developing their younger players, but – especially without their own draft picks – there was no harm in shooting for the playoffs. This appears to a blow to that (already unlikely) dream.

It’s a boon to the Cavaliers, though. And whenever something significantly affects LeBron James‘ team, it has ramifications into the entire power dynamic of the Eastern Conference. For an injury to a player on a team most expect to be bad, the medical developments here will be tracked closely around the league.