New York considered packaging Kristaps Porzingis pick in potential 2015 package for DeMarcus Cousins
The New York Knicks have a list of regrets in their closet of would-have-been moves to make. Among them was potentially pairing Carmelo Anthony with one of the best big men in the game, DeMarcus Cousins.
According to Ian Begley of SNY, high-ranking Knicks officials strongly considered putting together a package to trade for then-Sacramento Kings star DeMarcus Cousins months prior to the 2015 NBA Draft. The Knicks were planning on including their No. 4 overall selection that year, one that later became Kristaps Porzingis.
While Porzingis was a talented teammate of Anthony for two seasons, Cousins would have been undoubtedly the best player Melo had ever played within a Knicks uniform, surpassing the likes of Amar’e Stoudemire, Tyson Chandler, and JR Smith.
Had the Knicks traded for Cousins (assuming the trade was accepted by the Kings), Phil Jackson would have been unable to draft the unicorn, but fans could have witnessed another forward/big man tandem after the Stoudemire-Anthony duo didn’t work so well during its stint together in The Big Apple.
There are a million reverberations that could have happened with this trade, along with other ‘what ifs’ associated with this potential trade. Cousins would have not been traded right after the All-Star Game ended in 2017, he wouldn’t have played with Anthony Davis (now twice), and the Knicks could have likely kept Anthony and Cousins if things went well.
There’s no guarantee that the package New York would have put together would have persuaded the Kings, who then were hellbent in keeping their troubled star — but it’s one of those what-ifs that will be buried in the pantheon of missed opportunities.