When the New York Knicks offered Tim Hardaway Jr a 4 year, $71 million contract a few days ago, we all shook our heads in disbelief. Sure, it was a sign that New York believed in the young shooting guard, but it just doesn't seem like the right move.
The contract means more than just the Knicks potentially throwing away their money, however. Reports indicate that the Knicks don't see a scenario where Hardaway Jr and Carmelo Anthony are playing on the floor together, meaning that it could be signaling Melo's departure from New York
Funny thing is, it was looking like the Knicks had finally turned it around. Getting rid of Phil and the triangle offense was just one step of much more to go, but it signaled a long overdue change for the organization.
After paying Hardaway Jr 71 million dollars though, it makes us wonder whether the Knicks are really better off.
For Carmelo Anthony, he's been stuck in it all. He's gone through all of the struggles with Phil, and the years of losing, and the drama the team has endured. Despite showing class and playing with honor through it all, the organization has abandoned him. It's clear that they're looking to trade him, and their desperation is growing every hour.
At this point, the Knicks see Carmelo as an aged, unfit, salary cap hold up. For them, he's simply a rock of money that must be moved. With the latest Hardaway deal, it's clear that the Knicks are trying to move in a different direction.
Over the last few hours, recent speculation and reports claim that the Knicks, Rockets, and Blazers have been in talks about a potential three-team trade that centers around Carmelo. The talks are still early, but guys like Anderson, Harkless, and Myers are being involved. It looks like the Knicks are trying really hard to find a new home for their aged star.
Whether or not that deal gets done, it's obvious that Melo's days in New York are numbered. Eventually, the Knicks will be desperate enough to take some other crazy offer and say good riddance to their long-time star for probably little more than a bag of peanuts. After everything Anthony has brought to the team over the years, that's pretty cold.
It doesn't get any better when you realize that Anthony doesn't want to leave. He's like the kid in a candy store that's being pulled out by their parents. Melo has a deep love and attachment to the city and isn't willing to give that up easily.
The Hardaway deal, however, proves that Carmelo will lose this battle. Even a love that deep can't keep him in New York now. His time is up, and the whole city knows it.