The Celtics reportedly told the Knicks they weren’t interested in a Carmelo Anthony trade.
But — with Anthony apparently willing to waive his no-trade clause for Boston and Anthony interest divided there — this rumor won’t die.
Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe
The Knicks haven’t given up hope on including the Celtics as a partner in a potential deal for Carmelo Anthony, sending a scout to Saturday’s Celtics-Bucks game.
A source indicated that Knicks president Phil Jackson has instructed management to move Anthony, who has a no-trade clause but included the Celtics as one of the teams for whom he’d waive the clause.
An NBA source said Celtics coach Brad Stevens would embrace coaching Anthony, but president of basketball operations Danny Ainge has rejected any deal.
Phil Jackson mouthpiece Charley Rosen, starting this latest round of Anthony trade talk, wrote Anthony would accept trades only to the Cavaliers or Clippers. And while the Knicks are still discussing trades with the Cavs (who rejected an Anthony-Kevin Love deal) and Clippers, perhaps the pool of viable suitors is wider than initially anticipated.
Still, even if Anthony is amenable, a New York-Boston trade would require Ainge’s consent. Anthony, due $26,243,760 plus a portion of his trade bonus next season, would seriously impede the Celtics’ flexibility. He’d cost draft picks (though likely not one of the Nets’ highly coveted first-rounders) and talented players. Anthony would also add minus defense to a team already slipping on that end, and his isolation-heavy offense would disrupt Boston’s style.
Perhaps, Stevens can soften Ainge’s concerns on the last two points. But that’s still a lot to overcome before Ainge approves.
DeMarcus Cousins had a bitter exit from the Kings, but that won’t be the last they see of him.
Cousins’ Pelicans will host Sacramento tomorrow night.
Not that Cousins rushed to talk about the matchup.
Justin Verrier of ESPN:
Cousins is pretty funny when joking with the media, and his smile is contagious. Just listen to all the laughs Cousins generates as he goes through his shtick.
Bonus points to Cousins for eventually breaking down and providing real answers. Some of his relationships in Sacramento were clearly meaningful to him, and he wanted to acknowledge those — even if he’d prefer just to get past this awkward game and all the talk it invites.
Lauri Markkanen is 7-foot and made 42% of his 3-pointers this season.
That combination alone will have NBA teams drooling, and the Arizona freshman will capitalize.
Evan Daniels of Scout:
Arizona’s Lauri Markkanen is declaring for the NBA Draft and is expected to sign with an agent, multiple sources told Scout.
Markkanen seems pretty certain to get picked in the lottery, likely in the top 10.
Calling him a good shooter for his height undersells him. It’s not just he shoots so efficiently from deep, it’s that he can generate 3-pointers in so many ways — pick-and-pops, spot-ups, off off-ball screens and even running pick-and-rolls himself. Having the height to shoot over defenders is his most noticeable asset, but don’t undersell his mobility.
Markkanen also finishes well at the rim and offensively rebounds at extremely impressive clip for someone who spends so much time on the perimeter. Those interior skills instill belief he will eventually become a suitable defender.
There are a couple red flags. He’s old for a freshman, turning 20 before the draft. He leaves plenty to be desired defensively, especially due to his lack of strength.
But his size and shooting are tantalizing. That’s plenty for now.
Watch for Collin Sexton in the 2018 NBA draft.
In the meantime, the Alabama commit had all eyes — include Dwyane Wade‘s — on him with this pass in the McDonald’s All-American Game last night.
Carmelo Anthony scored just nine points on 12 shots in the Knicks loss to the Heat last night — well below his season averages of 22 points on 19 shots per game.
Anthony, via Ian Begley of ESPN:
“I see the writing on the wall. I see what it is,” Anthony said late Wednesday night. “I see what they’re trying to do, and it’s just me accepting that. That’s what puts me at peace. Just knowing and understanding how things work. I’m at peace with that.”
Is Anthony talking about just the Knicks’ final dozen games of this season, when they’re clearly interesting in testing less-proven players? Or is he referring to his entire tenure in New York?
Anthony has said he’d consider waiving his no-trade clause if the Knicks want to rebuild, and they’ll reportedly try again to trade him this offseason. Perhaps, this is Anthony indicating he’s warming up to the idea of allowing a trade.
Anthony’s and Kristaps Porzingis‘ timelines are barely compatible, if at all. It’d make sense for the Knicks to go in a different direction.
Could Anthony be at peace with that?