- After a tumultuous 16 months that saw his role drastically shift from NBA star to teamless free agent, Carmelo Anthony has been traded from the Houston Rockets to the Chicago Bulls, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
- Anthony will not play any games with the Bulls, but the team will not immediately waive him to keep open the opportunity for a one-for-one swap before the February 7 trade deadline.
- Either way, the 10-time All-Star will likely find himself on a new NBA roster in the coming weeks, with the Los Angeles Lakers reportedly expressing interest should a roster spot become available.
Carmelo Anthony has endured one of the most magnificent falls from grace in NBA history, landing with five different teams over the last 16 months and transitioning from an NBA star to a teamless free agent in that span.
In his latest move, the 10-time NBA All-Star has been traded from the Houston Rockets to the Chicago Bulls along with cash considerations, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Anthony signed the veteran minimum with the Rockets the last offseason and played just 10 games before mutually parting ways with the team in November. He has not played since that move.
According to Wojnarowski, the Bulls have no intention of letting Anthony see the floor. Instead, they will look for a one-for-one trade opportunity if it arises before the February 7 trade deadline. If not, Chicago will waive him.
Still, that didn’t stop Bulls fans from reminiscing about what could have been:
Carmelo Anthony is finally coming to the Bulls! pic.twitter.com/96i3wY39Iq
— Kevin O'Connor (@KevinOConnorNBA) January 21, 2019
Regardless of whether he’s traded or waived, Anthony will likely find himself on a new NBA roster in the coming weeks and could make his long-awaited return to the court sooner rather than later. Although other teams could employ Anthony as a sharpshooter coming off the bench, few would be willing to release another player to free up a roster spot for him.
The Los Angeles Lakers have reportedly expressed interest in signing Anthony should a roster spot become available. Anthony is famously good friends with LeBron James, who has been a staple everywhere from Anthony’s Instagrams to his vacations. Unsurprisingly, James is said to be a vocal advocate for Anthony to join him in Hollywood, but his blessing may not be enough to move the needle on the fallen star.
Other potential landing spots for Melo include the Brooklyn Nets, who boast an open roster spot after dealing Kenneth Faried to Houston over the holiday weekend. Anthony’s family has remained in New York despite the power forward’s departure from the Knicks in 2017, so joining the Nets would be somewhat of a homecoming for him.
Anthony has also been linked to the Portland Trailblazers ever since his split with the Rockets. Both Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum tried to recruit Anthony to join them in Portland before he eventually took his talents to Oklahoma City, and the Trailblazers are in need of a third scorer now more than ever.
Melo struggled to find chemistry with the Thunder’s and Rockets’ star players. He has averaged 14.8 points per game since joining Oklahoma City after averaging more than 20 points per game in every other season of his NBA career. Finding a good fit with whatever team he joins could be crucial to the future of his career, which may very well be on its last legs.