Gone but not forgotten, the infamous picture of Chris Paul, Lebron James, Dwayne Wade, and Carmelo Anthony all rocking the mini boat together never fully came to function. However, that doesn’t mean it’s too late for some of them to play with each other. After all, Melo’s top destinations this offseason are the Rockets, Lakers, and Heat.
He seems to be leaning towards wanting to play with the Rockets, but I don’t see OKC or Houston willing to give the other what they want, and the Lakers don’t seem to be actively persuing him at the moment. But the Miami Heat on the other hand make it very interesting. They aren’t competing for a title (no is aside from Golden State don’t kid yourself) but they are looking at a possible playoff run. With Carmelo Anthony and Dwayne Wade, does an Eastern Conference Finals appearance really sound shocking to you in the current Eastern Conference?
The Trade Would be Good for OKC: The Miami Heat’s roster has room for Melo and the Heat have bad contracts they’re willing to give up. Does that mean Dion Waiters and his $12 million dollar salary back in OKC? Dion is a small forward/shooting guard who OKC could really use. Throw in Alex Abrines and a second round pick, and the Heat would certainly take it. OKC gets to dump $32 million dollars of salary for $12 million, and get a capable small forward and shooting guard who can back up George and Roberson. With those three in the rotation for SF/SG, what else do you need? The Heat might throw in another bad contract to even it up but the thunder can waive that and stretch it out while still keeping Waiters. The one thing OKC doesn’t want to do is stretch him and get nothing in return, but they’re running out of options.
The Heat are Good for Melo: For Melo, it means the chance to play with Wade on a playoff team in a very open conference where they are capable of making a Finals run believe it or not. Melo gets to play in Miami freaking Florida, not have the pressure of leading the team, but still able to take as many shots as he wants and have a for sure starting position whether it be small forward or power forward. The chance to play under owner Pat Riley and head coach Eric Spoelstra should boost his confidence even more that it’s the right place.
Houston Has Problems: If he chooses Houston over LA or Miami, he’ll run into the same problems he faced in OKC. If he thought Russell Westbrook and Paul George had the ball too much, wait until he plays with Chris Paul and James Harden. If his problem in OKC was truly that his role was too small, I don’t know what he’s gonna expect from playing with Paul and Harden who already proved they can lead a team to the WCF on their own. If he’s okay with a smaller role as long as the teams winning, then maybe Houston might be the best place for him though. But Melo wants to shoot, which he’s earned at this point in his career. Just not on a team thats trying to win a title.
This trade is good for Melo, good for the Heat, and good for OKC. All they need is Sam Presti to work out the details.