The New York Knicks made a surprising move on Saturday, trading star forward Carmelo Anthony to the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for Enes Kanter, Doug McDermott and a 2018 second-round NBA Draft pick.
It was a surprising move because Anthony had previously said that he'd only waive his no-trade clause to join the Houston Rockets or Cleveland Cavaliers.
Then, on Saturday, he said he'd include the OKC Thunder and Portland Trail Blazers on his list, which directly led to his trade to OKC.
However, in a new report from Cleveland.com, the Cavs could have had Melo, if only they'd been willing to trade one player -- Tristan Thompson:
"The New York Knicks sought Tristan Thompson in a potential trade for Carmelo Anthony with the Cavaliers and were rebuffed, two sources told cleveland.com," the report read.
Given that the Cavs wouldn't have an interior presence without Thompson, it would be interesting to know what their thought process was behind not giving up Thompson for Melo. However, after the trade of star point guard Kyrie Irving, it's fair to question whether Melo would help the Cavs or hurt them.
So, the Cavs wouldn't budge on Thompson. Deal over, right? Wrong, according to the report. Apparently, the Knicks also asked about the two 2018 first-round NBA Draft picks owned by the Cavaliers, but the Cavs wouldn't part with either of them, either:
"New York also asked about one of Cleveland's two first-round choices for 2018, and the Cavs weren't about to part with either," the article read.
Now, Melo will join forces with reigning MVP Russell Westbrook and Paul George (who came over in an offseason trade with the Indiana Pacers) to try to challenge the Golden State Warriors for Western Conference supremacy.
Melo and PG-13 play roughly the same position, so it will be interesting to see how they co-exist on the same court, but with Westbrook running the show and center Steven Adams providing a solid fourth to the star trio, OKC should be able to at least make the playoffs with a high seed.
Westbrook averaged a season-long triple-double last year while winning the MVP award, but he also didn't have much help.
With guys like Anthony and George in the mix this coming fall, it'll be interesting to see how the Thunder jell. If Westbrook continues to play like he did in 2016, his new teammates may not be happy with how much they're getting the ball. However, if they do get the ball, there's no telling how far the Thunder can go.