New York Knicks: Designing an ideal Carmelo Anthony trade to Cleveland

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 04: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks in action against LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers at Madison Square Garden on February 4, 2017 in New York City. The Cavaliers defeated the Knicks 111-103. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 04: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks in action against LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers at Madison Square Garden on February 4, 2017 in New York City. The Cavaliers defeated the Knicks 111-103. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /
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CLEVELAND, OH – MAY 21: Kevin Love #0 celebrates with Kyrie Irving #2 of the Cleveland Cavaliers in the second quarter against the Boston Celtics during Game Three of the 2017 NBA Eastern Conference Finals at Quicken Loans Arena on May 21, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH – MAY 21: Kevin Love #0 celebrates with Kyrie Irving #2 of the Cleveland Cavaliers in the second quarter against the Boston Celtics during Game Three of the 2017 NBA Eastern Conference Finals at Quicken Loans Arena on May 21, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

The Finances

Designing an ideal trade will mean lining up salaries and finding a way to circumvent this restrictive situation. The Cleveland Cavaliers have minimal flexibility, meaning the finances would need to line up close to equally.

That could prove somewhat difficult when one considers the fact that Carmelo Anthony is one of the highest paid players in the NBA.

Anthony is owed $26,243,760 for the 2017-18 season, which is the only figure of note as far as getting the trade done is concerned. He also has a player option worth $27,928,140 for 2018-19, which Cleveland must be ready to take on in the event that Anthony accepts it.

As far as simply executing a trade is concerned, Cleveland would need to keep it close to the $26,243,760 figure in outgoing salaries.

Kyrie Irving will make $18,868,626 in 2017-18, and Kevin Love will be paid $22,642,350. One of those two contracts will likely need to be included, as a combination of Iman Shumpert at $10,337,079 and J.R. Smith at $13,760,000 simply wouldn’t be accepted.

With conflicting salaries, New York will need to either get creative with its trade package or include a third team in the proceedings.