The Zen Master completed a deal with the Dallas Mavericks that sends Tyson Chandler and Raymond Felton to Dallas for Jose Calderon, Samuel Dalembert, Shane Larkin, Wayne Ellington, and the 34th and 51st picks in tonight's NBA draft.
This is the first big move for the Knicks president, and looks like a clear sign that Jackson is going to be very aggressive in making the New York contenders once again. Jackson hopes to have as much salary-cap flexibility as he can in the hopes of convincing Anthony to stick around Madison Square Garden.
"The journey to build this team for the upcoming season and beyond continues," Jackson said."We have added players with this move that will fit right in to our system while maintaining future flexibility.
"We would like to thank Raymond and Tyson for their time and hard work with the organization over the past few years."
Chandler gets to go back to the team he won his only championship, and didn't seem to be a natural fit for Jackson's triangle offense. The triangle needs a low-post center who can pass off the ball well. Chandler never displayed any kind of low post offense his three seasons with the Knickerbockers. He is scheduled to make $14.6 million this season, which is the final one in his contract.
The big part of the trade is certainly the upgrade in the point guard spot. Felton had a very forgettable season on and off the court. He was a huge defensive liability and further embarrassed himself by being arrested on gun charges. He had one year left on his contract at $3.8 million, with a player option in 2015-16.
Calderon maybe one of the most underrated point guard in the entire NBA, and one of best three-point shooters in the game. He has 3 years left on his contract that will pay him about $21 million. In 81 games played last season with the Mavericks, Calderon averaged 11.4 points and 4.7 assists on 46% shooting from the field. He lived up to his reputation by being one of the best three-point shooters last season by knocking down 45% from beyond the arc.
In Dalembert, the Knicks get themselves a very serviceable center. The 6-Foot-11 Dalembert averaged 7.8 points on a career-high 57% shooting from the field, 6.8 rebounds, and 1.18 blocks per game in 20 minutes played. He played in 80 of the 82 games last season, and has been proven to be very durable over his 12 year career.
Larkin, the son of baseball Hall of Famer Barry Larkin, was drafted with the 18th overall pick in last year's NBA draft. He played sparingly in an injury-filled rookie season as he averaged 2.8 points and 1.5 assists in 45 games played.
New York hopes that by trading for two second round picks, they can try to trade into the first round. There has been talk of the team trading Iman Shumpert to the Thunder for their first round pick, but that still remains to be seen.