In announcing the addition of five front office hires, Steve Mills and Scott Perry are putting together a cabinet that they hope can help steer the Knicks’ ship in the right direction.
In signing Tim Hardaway Jr., Michael Beasley, Ramon Sessions and retaining other young players, New York has gone about their offseason like normal. They’ve made quiet but necessary moves, filling in the gaps on the roster and bringing in strong role players to better complement the youth on this team. As the organization moves forward, the youthful energy that comes from the likes of Kristaps Porzingis, Frank Ntilikina, and others figures to frame this group’s identity.
There’s just one problem, or more so, a big surprise that stems from this offseason: Carmelo Anthony is still a Knick.
Following the ousting of Phil Jackson, a move involving Anthony seemed imminent. The team has made its intentions clear. Mills and Co. want to get younger, start fresh, and build from within featuring up and coming prospects. New York has failed to succeed, or at the very least, build, with Anthony serving as the centerpiece. As much as everyone would like to see that work, it’s time to move on.
As the Knicks look to create a new identity, respective future, and a brighter path for the future, one would have expected moving Anthony to be the top priority before anything else. As fate would have it, the Knicks have gone about their business, making moves and changing things up in spite of the star forward remaining on the payroll.
Can this new look front office work together to find the right deal to move him? At this point in the offseason, that would appear unlikely.
Anthony has made it very clear from the beginning that he wanted time to adapt to any forthcoming change. Whatever happens next figures to force his family to adjust, and he wanted time to ease into the transition before his son entered the respective school year. Don’t look now, but that’s coming up quickly. What’s more, Anthony has the right the veto any trade, and it’s up to him how quickly he would want to make the change heading into a new season. It takes time to apartment/house hunt and get settled into new surroundings. Perhaps he won’t be so keen on taking care of such things with training camp rapidly approaching. The upcoming season figures to be imperative for Anthony as he looks to revitalize his career. He needs to be focused and locked in more than ever.
That means he likely won’t care to be rushed into any forthcoming transition. Anthony’s no-trade clause gives him the power to say when and where a trade happens. Should another couple of weeks go by without any progress for a deal, he may just opt to stay put.
That would obviously be detrimental to the Knicks’ respective vision for development. Harboring a player like Anthony on the roster dictates that an organization is in win-now mode. New York clearly isn’t there, especially with the moves they’ve made this offseason. Thus, keeping Anthony in town at this point would be a waste for both parties.
Moving Anthony has obviously been a goal for quite some time now. There’s been movement behind the scenes. Just because the Knicks have recently announced such additions in the front office doesn’t mean these staffers weren’t on board already assisting Mills and Perry as they search for a solution.
Still, the need to pull the trigger is more pressing than ever, even if Anthony himself isn’t appearing in the headlines non-stop. The waters still aren’t very calm. If the Knicks do not move quickly, Anthony will remain on the roster heading into training camp and that won’t help anyone.