The long, drawn-out negotiations for Carmelo Anthony ended Monday night with the All-Star forward going from Denver to the New York Knicks.
The deal was completed, after months of talks, to pair the former Syracuse star with Amar’e Stoudemire at Madison Square Garden.
The Knicks paid a steep price. Three starters — point guard Raymond Felton, forward Danilo Gallinari and rookie center Timofey Mozgov (whom the Nuggets reportedly demanded to seal the deal) — plus sixth man Wilson Chandler (a restricted free agent this summer the Knicks may not have re-signed) head for Denver.
Eddy Curry (and his expiring $11.3 million contract) plus little-used forward Anthony Randolph go to Minnesota for a pair of second-round picks (but not a first) that will go to Denver.
Never miss a local story.
The Knicks also will send their 2014 first-round pick (the earliest they are allowed to trade under NBA rules forbidding the trade of consecutive No. 1 picks), plus $3 million to Denver.
In return, the Knicks also get 34-year-old former All-Star point guard Chauncey Billups, plus three infrequently used Nuggets reserves: veteran point guard Anthony Carter, 2006 Knicks first-round draft pick Renaldo Balkman and well-traveled big man Shelden Williams.
So, with 28 games to go in the regular season, the Knicks (sixth in the East playoff standings) will be adjusting on the fly with six players going out and five new ones coming in.
But it gives them Anthony, the Brooklyn native whom their cross-Hudson rivals, the Brooklyn-bound Nets, wanted badly enough that owner Mikhail Prokhorov twice broke his word that his team was out of the running.
Anthony gave no indication of his impending move during a Monday night appearance on Conan O’Brien’s TBS Show, during a playful exchange in which the host asked him to choose between Manhattan clam chowder, New Jersey salt water taffy and a Denver omelette. He chose the latter.
Jarrett Jack, a reserve point guard for the Hornets, was arrested on suspicion of DUI in suburban Atlanta. Miami’s Dwyane Wade practiced and pronounced himself fit to play tonight against Sacramento despite a sore right ankle. The All-Star Game drew a 5.2 rating, up 37 percent from last year and its highest since Michael Jordan’s last appearance in 2003.