Dime Magazine's Austin Burton thinks that the Houston Rockets should attempt to include J.R. Smith in any trade proposal involving Carmelo Anthony, and while it's a decent attempt at nailing two birds with one stone... actually, no, that's not the case. Here's Burton's proposal:
Houston gets: Carmelo Anthony, J.R. Smith
Denver gets: Kevin Martin, Shane Battier, Jared Jeffries
Burton is leap-frogging a few key concerns for the Rockets in his proposed swap.
1. The Rockets' $6.3 million trade exception exists in all places except for this article. It allows the Rockets to keep larger contracts like Kevin Martin's and instead send less talented players like Chase Budinger or Jordan Hill to Denver. I'm here to render Martin untradeable, only because the asking price would be too high. The Rockets appear to value him more than many teams. As crazy as it sounds, I'm not convinced that the Rockets would make a straight Martin-for-Melo swap.
Of course, if Denver falls in love with a potential talent haul from New Jersey, the trade exception suddenly loses a bit of leverage. But New Jersey doesn't have a whole lot more to offer Denver than the Rockets do. If each team gave up one of their three best players in a trade, there's a good chance Anthony would take a pass on the deal.
2. No way J.R. Smith wears a Rocket uniform. No way, no chance, not going to happen. Les Alexander doesn't mess with people of Smith's questionable character and track record. And to send away a team leader in Battier for a notorious badboy? What kind of message does that send to the club? Oh, and by the way, as exciting and thrilling as Smith can be at times on the court, he can go on shooting slumps that would make Von Wafer look consistent. Sorry, but no thanks. There is a reason why Denver is shopping him, after all.