- Matt Slocum/AP
It looks like Phil Jackson and the New York Knicks are giving into an inevitable rebuild.
According to Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Knicks have continued to shop Carmelo Anthony, calling up the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Clippers to gauge interest.
ESPN reported on Wednesday that the Knicks gauded the Cleveland Cavaliers’ interest in trading Kevin Love for Anthony. The Cavs reportedly rejected the offer.
Wojnarowski reports that Jackson is “determined” to find a trade Anthony would accept before the February 23 trade deadline. In doing so, Jackson hopes to rid the Knicks of Anthony’s contract to begin rebuilding around Kristaps Porzingis.
Anthony holds a no-trade clause, which allows him to shoot down any potential trade. Anthony has publicly stated his desire to remain in New York, and in a meeting with Phil Jackson, reportedly told him he’s not interested in waiving the no-trade clause. However, Anthony told Newsday in January that he would consider waiving the clause if the Knicks wanted to rebuild.
After a promising 14-10 start, the Knicks have gone just 4-14 since Christmas, falling to 20-27 on the season. Amid the rapid descent, the Knicks have been falling apart at the seams. Anthony has been miffed by Jackson’s public criticism over his play, and believed a critical column written by Jackson associate Charley Rosen was inspired by Jackson himself.
Meanwhile, Derrick Rose went AWOL before a game and received only a fine from the team. He later questioned Jeff Hornacek’s coaching, while backup point guard Brandon Jennings expressed frustration with the rotation. Earlier in January, Lee posted two Instagrams of “Dumb and Dumber” characters after he was benched for rookie guard Ron Baker. He later deleted them and said they were meant to depict his frustration with the team’s struggles.
Anthony’s no-trade clause represents the biggest hurdle in the Knicks’ rebuild, but if they tell him they’re looking to go another direction, it may be the start of a tear-down.