The 2017-18 Cleveland Cavaliers may have looked a lot like the current Oklahoma City Thunder.
At least so says Carmelo Anthony, who the New York Knicks traded to the Thunder this past weekend. Speaking to SiriusXM on Thursday, the 10-time All-Star revealed that earlier in the offseason, the Cavs had a deal in place that would have not only sent him but also new Oklahoma City teammate Paul George, to Cleveland.
Per ESPN.com's Ian Begley, Anthony said:
"Me and PG have a very close friendship. Actually, it was funny because me and PG was supposed to be in Cleveland on draft night. we were communicating about that. The deal was actually done and it got called off on draft night, so me and PG stayed connected throughout the course of the season."
Earlier this summer, ESPN reported that a three-team trade between the Cavs, Indiana Pacers and Denver Nuggets that would have sent George to Cleveland was called off when Indiana opted to pull out of the deal. The Pacers eventually traded George to the Thunder on the eve of the kickoff to NBA free agency.
"I will say Indiana could have done better than they did," Cavs owner Dan Gilbert said in August of his team's failed efforts to acquire George, a 4-time All-Star.
Anthony's comments, however, are the first indication that suggests he would have also been included in such trade. Last weekend, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Anthony, who is close friends with current Cavs LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, would have waived his trade clause with the Knicks to accept a deal to Cleveland before ultimately being traded to Oklahoma City, where he joined George.
According to ESPN's Dave McMenamin, New York wanted to acquire Tristan Thompson from the Cavs in exchange for Anthony, but Cleveland was unwilling to part with its starting center.