Mark D. Smith-USAT

There were some some rumblings yesterday but today it hit. The Oklahoma City Thunder have traded Carmelo Anthony to the Atlanta Hawks in a three-team traded that’s a bit wild but we’ll break it down for you.

Anthony had reportedly waived his no-trade clause so the Thunder could trade him, saving over $100M in luxury tax. There had been talks with a handful of teams. The Atlanta stuff came down yesterday. Atlanta’s main point was offloading Dennis Schroder. They want Trae Young to be their No. 1 guy.

So, Oklahoma City is sending Carmelo Anthony and all of his $27.9 million to Atlanta for Dennis Schroder and a lottery protected 2022 first round pick. Also, Atlanta is sending Mike Muscala to Philadelphis and the 76ers are sending Timothe Luwawu-Caborrot to the Thunder.

First and foremost, the Thunder will save a ton of money. Through all of the weeds, Oklahoma City is saving $62 million in luxuty tax alone. Their salary cap drops considerably. From $160 million to $148.7 million.

Secondly, the Thunder get a bench scoring guard they’ve desperately wanted since Reggie Jackson leaving. Victor Oladipo was going to be that guy but KD did his thing. So, he was forced to start. They like having the defensive two-guard who can start and use someone’s scoring ability off the bench to counter the bench inefficiencies.

Schroder will make $15.5 million over the next three seasons but there’s a huge upside with him. He’s been the main focal point on an offense the last two seasons and that often will see his numbers dip and they have. Schroder averaged 19.4 points and 6.2 assists per game on 43.6 percent shooting, including 29 percent from three last season. He also was the focal point of the offense last season. Compared to the higher efficiency the previous seasons.

Atlanta had just traded for Jeremy Lin and to keep quality point guards of in threes is rare and quite inefficient. Especially when all three are particularly big in ball dominance. There had been leaks since the acquisition of Jeremy Lin the Hawks were interested in shipping Schroder because of his contract out of Atlanta.

For Timothe Luwawu-Caborrot, aka TLC, averaged only 5.8 points per game. He’s a lanky wing who has a high potential. He’s like a shorter Jerami Grant. His per 36 numbers, if you want to stretch them out to projections, are 13.3 points per game and shooting almost 34 percent from three. His not an overly good defender his first two years in the NBA.

I don’t think Oklahoma City is going to waive either player. Schroder is tied in for the next three seasons. That would mean stretching $6.6 million for seven years. SEVEN. Luwawu is making $1.54 million this season and has a team option for next season the team can decline. So, he’s not going anywhere.

The Melo-Thunder saga is over. Both tried but it unfortunately never worked when Andre Roberson went down with an injury. Onto the next one as the Thunder are not holding back in trying to build a championship during Russell Westbrook’s prime.

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Chuck Chaney

Founder & Editor-in-Chief.
Member of the Professional Basketball Writers Association.