Good post Knuckles.
DEN also got waxed in the first round. The regular season & post season are two different games. Through the grind of 82 games, playing across USA, here and there & day or night; spunky teams w/ energy that buy into a coach's system will overachieve. Only a few stars (Kobe) have the pride to bring their A+ game (and play hard through injuries), so NATURALLY when you play a teans sans major stars, on a Sun afternoon, or Tuesday night, on the road, you let your guard down.
These are NBA players. Give them a window, some confidence, and away they go.
HOWEVER, once you get into the playoffs, that all flies out the window. Spunky gets you nowhere. The better teams wins in a 7-game series. If you don't have a superstar to get you buckets down the stretch in crunch time... You in trouble.
Our team w/out Carmelo would win NOTHING. Not w/ MIA & CHI in the East. MAYBE, over the course of 2-5 seasons... We could've won a series. But never would we do much of anything, let alone compete for an NBA title.
Felton? Dude went south quickly in NY. ALmost as quickly as Duhon. By Feb last eyar, his play grew worse & worse. Not to mention, while in CHA, ORL or ATL ran circles around in in the playoffs. DEN traded him, & he was recently benched in POR. If we had Felton, we would never had given LIN a shot, & w/out Carmelo we probably don't sign B Davis.
I would take Lin & Davis over Felton.
Let's also remember, if we don't make this trade we don't have C Billups. If we didn't have the ability to cut CB, we don't have the cap space to add Tyson Chandler. Maybe if he's in NY, we resign Wilson & he stays away from China. I doubt it, he probably still is looking for his cash.
Still, let's just say that I prefer Tyson Chandler over Wilson Chandler.
Are we really hyping T Mozgov? Is he a starting center in the NBA? A promising prospect? Is he a career grinder, like Foster of Nazir Muhammed? MOZ was a case of "well, we really should draw the line somewhere in the deal so we should not throw in this final piece, but then again are we really gonna let this guy block the deal to get a HOF player" ... Tough call. If we had the MOZ, we probably don't draft Josh Harrellson. We probably don't bring back Jared Jeffries? Who knows. We probably even have to overpay for a compliment C, like Kwame Brown or something.
Anyway, let's call this a draw. I think Knicks are happy they have TC starting at center instead of Mozgov though. Sure, I prefer Mozgov over Jeffries or Harrellson.
Corey Brewer & Anthony Randolph? Let's not even go there. Neither was a D'anotni player. Both would have walked anyway last Summer.
The meat of the deal comes down to Danillo Gallinari or Carmelo Anthony. And don't cop out & say that you would take Danillo plus the other guys over just Carmelo. The truth is exaclty the opposite.
I would take Tyson Chandler, Jeremy Lin, Baron Davis, Josh Harrellson, Jared Jeffries over Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Mozgov, Randolph & Brewer.
I honestly felt that to be truly all-in for an NBA title this season, we needed to find a way to get Carmelo, while holding on to both Amar'e & Gallo. Gallinari would have been the perfect 6th man. He would close out games. He would be our H-Turkoglu. A point fwd and deep threat shooter.
In a perfect world, Carmelo goes to free agency, and we have both. But Knicks have no luck, and it happened that we had to contend w/ the lockout mess. If there was no impending work stoppage, does Melo not call out bluff? Does he let it known through back channels that he'll wait?
Again, I refer to what I just said... I would still prefer Tyson Chandler, Lin, Davis and that over having even Felton, Wilson & Gallo.
Guess who is injured again this year? THAT's right, the young kid Gallo. Always hurt. Gallo is also not a Center. Lebron and MIA would eat him alive on offense in the playoffs.
So, let's stop talking about this trade, & how bad it was for us or how good we were before the deal. We were still a .500 team at the time, and only b/c of a fluke 14-1 run or something, were we even in the picture of respectability.
This isn't to say I love Carmelo. I'm 50/50 on him. I approved of the deal, even though I hated that Dolan balked and gave in too early. It still was a necessary trade.
I also admit that Carmelo shoulders the burden here. Had he waited & signed w/ us, there would have been an out here... I would give him a pass. BUt, since he pushed for the deal, he is under the pressure here. I wanted to get here, at any cost, feeling that he was good enough. If he made us sacrifice some depth or role players, then he must carry the burden.
Win or he's a failure.
What if we didn't make the deal though? Wilson is in China, Gallo is hurt, Mozogv in & out of lineup b/c of injuries, Felton flopping. Are we better? Maybe we are the same, like we would have been last year (either squad gets swept by BOS). BUt w/out Melo, Davis, Tyson... would we have any shot in the first round against CHI or MIA?