Star League

by - February 22, 2011 - - 1 Comment »

Everyone writing or talking about the Carmelo Anthony trade keeps saying the same thing. The NBA is a star’s league. You do whatever you can to get a star. While that theory is more or less correct, there is a guy I would consider a star who is not being talked about.

The formula for winning a championship has almost always been to have two or more superstars (shockingly, this was not discovered by the Miami Heat). Before South Beach, there was Bird and McHale, Magic and Kareem, Jordan and Pippen, Kobe and Shaq, Pierce, Allen and Garnett and so on. However, there have been a few exceptions to prove that rule. Hakeem Olajuwon (when Jordan just so happened to be out of the league) and the Detroit Pistons.

The most recent Pistons championship team won with great defense and absurd balance. Balance led by their best player, Finals MVP and now New York Knick, Chauncey Billups. While Billups may never have been considered a “superstar” and is now 34-years-old, his impact on this trade is being totally discounted.

Those same Pistons went to the Finals back-to-back years with Billups at the helm. And Carmelo Anthony’s Nuggets never got out of the first round of the playoffs until Billups was traded to his team (they were in the Conference Finals that year…a place Billups went seven consecutive seasons). Billups is a winner and as tough as Raymond Felton played while donning New York on his chest, Billups is a tremendous upgrade for the Knicks at the point guard position.

He won’t be able to play the minutes Felton did but he runs the pick and roll better than almost anyone and his outside shot keeps opposing teams honest. If not, they will eat three pointers (he’s shooting 44% this year, 39% for his career). In fact, the typical learning curve experienced by a team undergoing such an overhaul will be severely lessened simply because Chauncey is running the team. He may not be the long-term answer. But for now, he already gives the Knicks their own big three.

As far as Carmelo Anthony goes, if you can trade Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler and Timofey Mozgov for him and then pair him with Amar’e Stoudemire, you do it. I don’t care if Donnie Walsh, Isiah Thomas or Homer Simpson is the one making the deal. It’s an unquestionably good one.

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One Response to “Star League”

  1. H. Rodham says:

    Fact: Robin Lundberg’s favorite sport is basketball.
    Fact: Robin Lundberg is a carpetbagger and has resided in New York for only 8 years.
    Fact: Robin Lundberg stated that New York at it’s core is a basketball town.
    Fact: Robin Lundberg is biased.
    Fact: Robin Lundberg despises baseball.
    Fact: Robin Lundberg touts national basketball ratings but disregards local baseball ratings when compared to local basketball ratings.
    Fact: Robin Lundberg at his core is a bold-faced liar and is definitely no authority on what New York is, was, or ever will be.

    Trust me. Robin Lundberg can not be trusted.

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