First off, again, here's how we know the BS is BS: The calendar. Trust this: The trade deadline is still over two weeks away, and Denver is going to run the bidding on Carmelo Anthony as long and as far as it can to try to get the very best offer(s).
So when we are hearing that a ‘Melo deal is supposedly "close" so far before the deadline, you can instantly ascertain that someone – a team or even a media outlet -- is throwing this stuff out there to get attention, but that the story itself is full of holes.
With so much nonsense flying, and more to come, here are a few tips on how to evaluate what you're hearing.
1. Whatever you hear about ‘Melo and a trade, right now it's kinda like "negotiating through the press,'' where something is being leaked for a reason.
2. But why?
*It may be to entice more bids.
*Or it may be to try to set some price levels.
*Or it may have little to do with ‘Melo at all, just player names being leaked to light a fire under them or set the table for a trade somewhere else.
3. As long as you find a media outlet you trust, know that the (trustworthy) media outlet won't be the originator of this stuff. They'll get it from someone who told it to them. So you gotta take a look and figure out who is trying to send a message here and what message might they be trying to send.
4. But also, do consider the media outlet itself. That's often overlooked, yet important, because "national media" don't truly have the unlimited access they appear to have. Usually a certain front office trusts a certain media member, and when you see who reported it, you might also get some clues as to which front office is trying to put this out there.
So much of what is presented in as in-depth reporting is a façade, to be frank.
To apply that last point to the ‘Melo story, be aware that everyone talks for ‘Melo ... and they all have their own agendas and, if you've noticed, they tell a different tale. (DB.com has been told that pinning down ‘Melo's desires on a given day depend on which member of ‘Melo's circle answers the phone.) So if we hear something about "Melo's thinking,'' it may or may not be accurate -- no one knows. Not the reader, and maybe not even the reporter.
Then when it comes to Denver, the front office is new, so it's unlikely its members have exchanged widespread media trust yet. This means that whatever rumor you're hearing possibly has originated from another team trying to stir the pot somehow.
5. Finally, don't assume that (for example) an LA rumor is something being fed by LA from LA. For example, if an Atlanta-based writer tells you a scoop about LA, maybe he has heard something from LA, but consider that someone close to him in the Hawks organization has something he wants to spitball and see what happens. In the specific case of the Bynum-for-Melo rumor, it fits far better as part of some of this six lessons than it does as anything the two teams have the track record of wanting to do.
"I hear LA is willing to offer Bynum for ‘Melo" then has the resonance of an LA or Denver insider, but the truth is something very different.
6. Or, as Nellie used to say as the trade deadline approached for his Dallas Mavericks, "Don't believe anything you hear me say because it's all gonna be a lie.''
Two weeks from the deadline, as teams are trying to lay the groundwork for deals to come, it would be wise to heed that same advice on the stories you're hearing.