Multiple media outlets have reported on Wednesday that the New York Knicks have completed a trade that sends Tyson Chandler and Raymond Felton to the Dallas Mavericks for Jose Calderon, Samuel Dalembert and Shane Larkin, as well as a couple second-round picks. This is a a very good trade for the Knicks for a couple of reasons.
First, losing the production of Chandler and Felton is not too big of a deal for the Knickerbockers. Felton had the worst season of his career so far, averaging a career-low 9.7 points per game on 39.5 percent shooting and 31.8 percent from long distance. From yawning during team huddles and off-court arrests, Felton is somebody the Knicks don’t need during a rebuilding process and there was no other way of getting rid of him than to trade him, as he would be on contract for two more years. On top of that, they get a solid veteran in Calderon, who averaged 11.4 points per game and shot 44.9 percent from beyond the arc, fifth best in the NBA this past season. He also had a better assist-to-turnover ratio, 3.6, than the struggling Felton’s 2.6. While getting rid of someone who wasn’t too much of a veteran leader, they gain a better player as well. Plus, they get the young Larkin, who was the 18th pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. This will help make the Knicks younger and quicker, so even though the kid from Miami hasn’t played much, he will be able to learn and develop from a man who played the point guard position for a lot of years in his coach, Derek Fisher.
As far as Chandler and Dalembert, both have expiring contracts. Chandler returns to the place where he won a title and both teams can try out the players and see if they can help in the long run and extend them if they choose at season’s end.
Financially, the Knicks will save a little bit of money as they would have owed Chandler over $14 million this year as opposed to the $3 million they will owe Dalembert, but Calderon is also owed around $22 million for the next three years. This move is more to bring a mix of more youth and talent compared to helping the Knicks financially. Besides, while they lose a player who won Defensive Player of the Year for the them, the Knicks’ addition of Dalembert might not be significantly worse. Heck, he might even be just as good as Chandler. Dalembert averaged 6.6 points and 6.8 rebounds per game compared to Chandler’s 8.7 and 9.6 during 2014. The difference is that Chandler played 10 more minutes per game than Dalembert. If you compare their stats per 48 minutes, Dalembert’s 15.7 points, 16.1 rebounds and 2.8 blocks are all greater than Chandler’s (13.9, 15.3 and 1.8).
To sum up, the Knicks will come out of this trade the winner in my opinion. They improve at the point guard position, which was much needed. They also add depth and some youth while getting rid of one of the bigger problems of the 2013-14 season in Felton and will end up with pretty much the same production at the center position. This also is the first major player move in the Phil Jackson era, so he has already shown he is active in trying to make this team better for the long run. I really like how this trade will help out the New York Knicks.