The NBA trade rumors of 2014 haven't just centered on the Los Angeles Lakers and Andrew Bynum of the Cleveland Cavaliers. Recently, there's been more news reported of a potential blockbuster trade involving Carmelo Anthony of the New York Knicks in exchange for Blake Griffin of the Los Angeles Clippers. The news arrive as the Knicks continue their struggle in the Eastern Conference and the Clippers have recently lost All-Star point guard Chris Paul to a shoulder injury.
A Jan. 4 report via ESPN.com notes that the two teams have “talked” about a proposed trade, only not with each other. Both the Knicks and Clippers’ internal management has had discussions over the moves, but neither team is 100% certain it would make the Anthony-for-Griffin deal. Carmelo is entering free agency this coming summer, and is likely to be contemplating a new team, which may have increased the Knicks’ interest in trading home. New York is currently third from the bottom of the basement in the standings for the Eastern Conference with an underachieving record of 10-22 so far this season.
For the Clippers, they currently sit at fourth overall in the Western Conference with a record of 23-12. Much of that success has come due to league-leading assist man Chris Paul and the help of big men DeAndre Jordan (league leader in rebounds and field goal percentage) and All-Star Blake Griffin. Griffin is currently eleventh in the league in scoring with 22.1 points a game, and seventh in the league in rebounding with 10.6 a game. The current rumors and insider info seems to indicate that of the two teams, the Clippers are more interested in holding onto their star player Griffin, who is having a great year, for a team that is right in the playoff mix ahead of the midway point of the season.
The deal with Anthony will give Melo plenty of room to negotiate which team he goes to. With free agency impending at the end of the season, a team that makes a deal for him will want to make sure they will be keeping him longer term, and not just serving as a transitional team, like the Lakers were for Dwight Howard. Carmelo is currently third in the league in scoring, averaging 26.2 points a game, and 19th in rebounding with about 9 a game on average.
The Clippers got bad news on Friday night during a game against the Mavericks at Dallas, as Chris Paul left the game with a shoulder injury in the third quarter. The injury came after a foul from Mavs’ guard Monta Ellis, and resulted in a separated shoulder for Paul. The current timetable for Paul’s return is 3 to 5 weeks, which could have him back as early as this month, or into February. The NBA trade deadline for 2014 is set for Thursday, Feb. 20 giving these teams well over a month to mull over any moves they want to make.