Photo: AP Images
Depending on who you believe in this crazy, mixed-up world, Knicks swing man Wilson Chandler is either an indispensable piece of the team’s future, or the team’s best hope of landing Carmelo Anthony before free agency and a potential lockout kills their privileged position.Things just got a whole lot more murky on that front. According to Frank Isola at the Daily News, Chandler is on the verge of ditching his agent, and hiring Amar’e Stoudemire’s guy, Happy Walters.
On face, this move is a sign of Knicks solidarity—evidence that Amar’e is going to help Chandler stay put at the best possible price, maybe even a low-key signal in the direction of GM Donnie Walsh. At the same time, though, there’s (rumoured to be) some equally cloak-and-dagger news from the Carmelo Anthony front.
The Denver Post has William “Worldwide Wes” Wesley at last night’s Nuggets game. It’s never been clear exactly what WWW’s role is in the league, but he seems to know every player of note and they at least look on him as a friend and advisor. Meanwhile, Newsday reminds us that it was LeBron James, always a part of any Wesley-based conspiracy theory, who first urged Anthony to make sure he became a Knick.
And then there’s Chandler, who Isola describes as “upset” and has a source explaining that “[Chandler]’s really worried that he’s going to get traded. He doesn’t want to leave New York. And he doesn’t want to be in Denver.”
What’s the upshot of it all? The dark forces that secretly control this league have taken an interest in Carmelo-to-the-Knicks. Then, there’s Amar’e, inserting himself into the intrigue by helping Chandler beef up his representation. Stoudemire has never been identified as one of Wes’s operatives, but he was at Melo’s wedding when LeBron first proposed an Anthony-Stoudemire team-up. He has also shared the Team USA experience with these guys, which has ironically turned into a breeding ground for pro-player coups like the Heat.
Amar’e probably isn’t out to sway Chandler through a new agent or otherwise help facilitate a Melo deal in the most nefarious way possible. If that’s not the case, though, he’s openly going up against his peers and the network they depend on. That’s a bold move, if for no other reason than because it shows that there’s room for dissent in this new NBA landscape. That and loyalty to something other than sheer power.
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