Nets Left Scrambling After Carmelo Whiff No. 3
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NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) – New Jersey Nets fans thought LeBron James’ summer snub of the Garden State was a tough pill to swallow.
After three swing-and-miss attempts to trade for Carmelo Anthony, Mikhail Prokhorov’s club is scrambling to pick up the pieces.
New Jersey is interested in acquiring some former Knicks now that the Denver Nuggets decided to ship Anthony to New York, a person familiar with the trade talks told the Associated Press.
The Denver Post, citing a league source, said the Knicks would send Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Danilo Gallinari, Timofey Mozgov and a 2014 first-round draft pick to the Nuggets, who would get additional picks and cash.
ESPN later reported it was a three-way deal with Minnesota, which would acquire Eddy Curry and Anthony Randolph from the Knicks for Corey Brewer.
The Nets and Nuggets have talked about a deal in which New Jersey will send two first-round draft picks to Denver for Russian center Timofey Mozgov and one of the three other players the Knicks are sending to Denver – Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler or Raymond Felton – according to the person familiar with the talks.
According to a NY Daily News source, the Nets are also “trying to pry Danilo Gallinari from the Nuggets and point guard Aaron Brooks from the Rockets.”
However, Nuggets GM Masai Ujiri isn’t keen on trading his new pieces.
“We brought those guys in to play for the Nuggets,” Ujiri told NBA.com Monday night.
The deal that would finish the season-long trade speculation involving Denver’s All-Star forward and send him to his desired destination can’t be finalized until Tuesday during a conference call with the NBA office. Assuming it goes through, it puts Anthony alongside Amar’e Stoudemire in a potentially explosive frontcourt — at a heavy cost to the Knicks, who hoped in July to sign two top stars but came away with only one.
The Knicks hope Carmelo will make his debut when they return from the All-Star break against the Bucks on Wednesday. The number he will wear — Melo’s customary No. 15 is retired in New York – is still in question.
Along with Anthony, New York would acquire Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams, Anthony Carter and Renaldo Balkman, according to the Post.
There were persistent rumors Anthony wouldn’t take the extension if traded to the Nets, which was a prerequisite for them agreeing to a trade. He instead gets his apparent wish to join a Knicks team that is in sixth place in the Eastern Conference and in position for its first playoff berth since 2004.
The Nets wanted Anthony and believed they would get him, hoping the Brooklyn native would be the face of their franchise when they open their new Barclays Center in that borough in 2012. But though he never publicly confirmed the speculation that he wouldn’t have extended with the Nets, he did note Friday during the All-Star weekend in Los Angeles that the Knicks were further along after acquiring Stoudemire — his good friend — last summer.
Previously, Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov stunningly yanked the Nets from trade discussions they’d spent months engaging in, telling the team on January 19 to end the long, drawn-out trade talks with the Nuggets.
Nets general manager Billy King told WFAN after the talks fell apart, simply, “we’re done, we’re moving on.”
Now it seems they have no choice.
What should the Nets do now? Sound off your Carmelo frustrations below…
(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)