After finalizing a deal that sent Tyson Chandler and Raymond Felton to the Dallas Mavericks for Jose Calderon, Shane Larkin, Samuel Dalembert and Wayne Ellington, along with two second-round picks for this upcoming NBA Draft, New York Knicks president Phil Jackson is continuing to work on possible trades in order to get the team into the first round of the draft.
Reportedly, the deal would involve sending both second-round picks, along with Larkin and $1.8 million, in exchange for a late first-round pick (22 or so). The main asset from this trade is Calderon, a great passer and amazing sharpshooter who lacks defensive efficiency. The other three are reportedly open for trades, even though Dalembert’s agent said Jackson will keep him for defensive purposes.
Another option that has been thrown around in the media is the team trading guard Iman Shumpert for a late first-rounder. This wouldn’t make much sense in terms of roster improvements, considering Jackson has stated that he likes Shumpert’s style of play and defensive abilities. However, moving a guy who is set to get a raise next year for a rookie and cheap contract would be good in terms of financial flexibility.
Obviously, the trade sent the message to Carmelo Anthony that the Knicks are trying to win now instead of next year, so it’s one more thing to think about as far as these trades are concerned. Carmelo seems to be more and more inclined to take his talents to another town this summer.
Even if Jackson does not manage to acquire a first-round pick, he has already made some good improvements both for the roster and for the financial flexibility of the team. Besides, the 34th pick is not that bad in such a deep draft class.