Nene adds more fuel to the Carmelo Anthony trade rumors fire

DENVER - OCTOBER 26: Carmelo Anthony
DENVER - OCTOBER 26: Carmelo Anthony /

The Carmelo Anthony trade rumors pick up more steam after Nene’s Instagram post.

On Sunday, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Brian Windhorst reported that the Houston Rockets were turning their full attention to putting together a trade for Carmelo Anthony.

Then on Monday, ESPN’s Ian Begley reported that the Knicks are confident a trade deal for Carmelo Anthony will be finalized before the start of the season.

Then on Monday evening, Nene Hilario poured a truck-load of fuel on the Carmelo Anthony trade rumors fire.

The Houston big man, who was teammates in Denver with Carmelo for eight seasons, posted an Instagram photo with Carmelo Anthony photoshopped in a Rockets uniform before deleting it.

Does Nene know something that we don't?

— Space City Scoop (@SpaceCity_Scoop) July 10, 2017

Nene said that he can’t wait to see Carmelo in a Houston uniform and was nostalgic about the moments they shared during their time together in the Mile High City. With Nene and Carmelo having a friendship off of the court, it is possible that Nene has  insider information of where Anthony will end up this summer.

A Rockets-Knicks deal will be complicated

Although things didn’t end well when Mike D’Antoni coached Carmelo in New York a few years ago, both would be willing to bury the hatchet if it meant that Houston could capture that elusive NBA championship. According to Marc Berman of the New York Post, Mike D’Antoni mentioned that the Rockets will need to load up on plenty of talent to beat Golden State. Carmelo is the most talented player that is available, and he gives Houston a shot at the Finals.

With Carmelo Anthony owed $26 million next season, Houston may struggle to put together a package deal that is acceptable to the font office in New York. Ryan Anderson ($19 million salary) and Trevor Ariza ($7 million salary) would be enough to match Carmelo’s value in a trade, but the Knicks are rumored to want young assets in return.

Houston traded away Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams and Sam Dekker among others to the L.A. Clippers for Chris Paul. They don’t have many tradable assets left to match Carmelo’s hefty salary. At this point, its likely that Houston will need to get a third team involved to pull off a trade with the Knicks. There are a lot of young teams in the NBA  in need of veterans who can lead their young players.

Either way, Daryl Morey will do whatever it takes to turn the Rockets into true contenders. As he said after the Rockets acquired Paul at the end of June, via Kristie Rieken of The Associated Press.

Next: 3 ways for a Carmelo Anthony trade to the Houston Rockets

“It’s a weapons race in the NBA and you’re either in the weapons race or on the sidelines.