The Cons of Bringing Anthony Back
Not much shelf life
The number 00 on his Portland jersey is close to the amount of time on the clock Anthony has left in the NBA. He will be 36 by the time next season starts and is only getting older. Any contract Anthony signed with the team would have to be a short term deal. The Knicks could just save their money in case an option arises for a player who can have a more prolonged impact on the team.
Chris Paul will be 35. If the experiment happens, it would also be potentially very short-lived. Think Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce in Brooklyn.
The Knicks need to move on
New York loves for Anthony, and he’ll go down in history as one of the greatest New York Knicks ever. But some believe the door needs to stay closed.
It’s understandable in the sense that bringing Melo back could cause confusion about how the team would use him. Anthony is no longer one of the best players in the league. Would the minutes he gets be better served by going to a player who would be around for the long-term.
While it wouldn’t be difficult to just use Melo as a quality starter, who can still effectively score and rebound a little bit, this is the New York Knicks. They have a habit of taking simple things like this and handling them in the worst possible way. It’s understandable to doubt the Knicks here.
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The Knicks need leadership at other positions
Younger players in the league would take Melo’s advice and be excited to learn from him. However, the young players that the Knicks like, and realistically can build something with, are Frank Ntilikina, Dennis Smith Jr., Mitchell Robinson, and RJ Barrett.
Ntilikina and DSJ are point guards, Robinson’s a center, and Barrett hasn’t played as much forward as initially expected, and seems to be more of a two-guard going forward. None of them play small forward, Melo’s position. While Anthony’s mentoring would still benefit all of them, it wouldn’t have as big of an effect as it would on a team with young forwards.
Neither side is wrong or unjust. It just depends on which perspective one prefers to take. It’s puzzling as to where the Knicks are trying to go right now, and maybe a decision to go after Melo will clear things up a little bit.