This team was supposed to challenge in the Eastern Conference. Coming off their first Atlantic Division win in nearly 20 years the New York Knicks were supposed to contend with the Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers. Instead they took an epic face-plant to kick off the season which led to a 3-13 start. Think it’s time to blow the team up? Sure, but don’t place the blame squarely on Carmelo Anthony.
Carmelo may at times seem uninterested; he may jack up 42 shots in one game and fall asleep on the bench, but he is still searching for that first championship. It just hasn’t — and won’t — come in the Big Apple. So who’s going to throw some money at Anthony, and are there teams that actually see him as damaged goods? Will a team actually pass on Anthony?
Well of course they won’t. This is the NBA, and even in the age of restrictive salary caps and harsh luxury taxes one team will eventually step forward with a deal to land a star like Anthony. The Knicks maintain they aren’t shopping Melo, but they would still like to land Boston Celtics star Rajon Rondo. Another player the Knicks have been linked to is Pau Gasol who remains an option because the Los Angeles Lakers have shopped him around to everyone.
Whatever they do they need to handle it now. This team — even with the roster overhaul — should not be this bad. The Knicks lost 10 games at home all last season, but they’re already at 15. That includes a franchise-worst seven-game home losing streak. This is not what general manager James Dolan had in mind, but it’s ultimately his doing.
Dolan has put together a team that just isn’t championship caliber. The Knicks are a playoff team destined for a first-round exit in the L-Eastern Conference — a shoddy rebuild for a team coming off a 54-win season. With no picks until the 2018 draft to trade away this team is in desperate need of a reset and quick. If management is able to make some moves maybe they win over Carmelo, but I doubt he’s found a deal good enough. I foresee Anthony traded before Dolan puts any faith in Melo coming back.
Mike Woodson likely won’t be retained either. This team needs a makeover with some new faces. But to place the blame solely on Melo is just misguided and inaccurate. Carmelo is still struggling to pass the ball, but he has no problem passing the blame and rightfully so.