There is no denying the fact that the benefited from the deal. Anthony is perhaps the most potent and versatile scorer in the NBA (when healthy), and has helped lead NY to the #2 seed in the Eastern Conference.
However, the Nuggets received Danilo Gallinari, Raymond Felton, Wilson Chandler, Timofey Mozgov, and a 2014 first-round pick. The Knicks gave up entirely too much for ‘Melo, whom they could have signed as a free agent at the end of the season.
Since the trade, the Nuggets have won 63% of their regular-season games, in comparison to the Knicks’ 57%. Denver has also won three more play-off games than the Knicks (four to one).
“Are we better since the trade?” Denver PG Ty Lawson said. “I’m not going to say that. I’ll just say we’re different. Our record is comparable, pretty much the same, still in that fifth-fourth area of the conference.”
The Knicks definitely got the best player out of the deal, but they could have kept all of their pieces (Felton, Chandler, Gallinari) and then signed Anthony after the season. He was forcing Denver to make a move, though, and the Nuggets were also in talks with the Brooklyn Nets (then from New Jersey), so I understand why New York made the deal when they did.
Numbers don’t lie, and the Nuggets have played better than the Knicks since making the groundbreaking ‘Melo-trade.
As the teams meet for the first time since making the deal tonight, Anthony will have his chance to show the Nuggets what they are missing, and show the Knicks what they gained. Denver is on a nine-game winning streak, and the Knicks are coming off of a 29-point beatdown in which Anthony was held to fifteen points.
Upon hearing the news that Amar’e Stoudemire will be out for the rest of the regular season, the Knicks need to win this game in order to spark the team (currently on a five-game road trip) and get their superstar back to playing at an MVP level.