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Melo to the Blazers? Odds What’s Next for Anthony After Reports of Rockets Moving On

Eric Rosales

by Eric Rosales in NBA Basketball

Updated Nov 12, 2018 · 9:18 AM PST

Carmelo Anthony shoots around with Team USA
Carmelo Anthony during happier times with Team USA. Photo by Tim Shelby (Wikimedia Commons).
  • Rockets reportedly ready to part ways with Carmelo Anthony
  • Where does ‘Melo resurface?
  • Early odds and predictions on Anthony’s next move

If Carmelo Anthony’s current career was A Tribe Called Quest song, it would have to be Keep it Movin’.

After just 10 games, reports are that ‘Melo’s days as a Houston Rocket are over. Remember the faux admiration party Anthony was given for his days as a member of the Hawks, not even playing a single game?


That’s not happening here.

Unfortunately, like last season with a faulty Thunder squad, Anthony is taking the fall for a Rockets team that, right now, frankly sucks across the board. While GM Daryl Morey tried to come to his defense, he almost made it worse.

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Last year’s top seed in the conference, Houston is just 4-7 and a shell of the former unit that came within a win of defeating the Warriors for a trip to the Finals.

Anthony, averaging a career low 13.4 points on 40.5% shooting, has been away from the team the last two games with what the team is calling an ‘illness’.

And while it hasn’t been confirmed, teammates talking in past tense sure sounds like he’s already gone.


Of course, we need to break out the crystal ball, and take a stab at some never-too-early-odds.

Odds on What Happens to Carmelo Anthony

Result SBD’s Odds
Released by End of November 1/9
Released before End of 2018 1/19
Remains with Rockets for Season 49/1
Released & Signs with Another Team 1/99

Analysis: It’s a virtual mortal lock Anthony not only gets released by the Rockets, but that the 34-year-old will resurface with another team this season. The only unknown is when.

It could very well happen as you’re eating your lunch this afternoon, well before the Rockets’ 9pm PT tipoff against the Nuggets.

Despite the NBA talent pool deeper than ever, GMs across the league will always take a flier on an NBA veteran in the hopes of tapping into one last hurrah.

Hey, speaking of which …

If Anthony is Released, Where Will He Go?

Team SBD’s Odds
Portland Trail Blazers 3/1
Philadelphia 76ers 4/1
Denver Nuggets 6/1
Los Angeles Lakers 6/1
Milwaukee Bucks 9/1
New Orleans Pelicans 15/1
Miami Heat 17/1
Golden State Warriors 20/1

Analysis: Now this is a great one. It’s not often that a top-20 scorer in NBA history (19th all-time with 25,551 points) is in the clearance section.

There are clearly flaws to his game, and it’s going to have to take a team with both the creativity and style to integrate Anthony into their system. And the player is going to have to find a better version of himself too.

‘Melo is currently averaging career lows in scoring, field goal attempts, minutes, free throw attempts, FT percentage, and assists.


Pick: If we’re talking best fits, the Blazers could really use another scorer to compliment an improved second unit in Rip City and a situational closer with Dame and McCollum. A two-seed is up for grabs in the West, and not having any real cap space means this is the kind of shopping Portland needs to do.

Ditto in New Orleans, where he’d orbit Anthony Davis and get plenty of great looks on offense and outstanding help side assists on defense.

And what about going full circle in the Mile High City? After forcing his way out of Denver in 2010, this edition of the Nuggets may need a savvy vet to stabilize the core of Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray, and Gary Harris.

If all is forgiven, maybe it is unfinished business and a return isn’t far-fetched.

Banana boat brother LeBron James could be enticing, especially since the Lakers were in pursuit of Anthony in the summer. But he’d face the same issues in LA as he did in OKC and Houston, and be well down the depth chart of players getting shots on that team.

He makes great sense on the Bucks and the Sixers, two teams whose offense bogs down at times, and having that player to work through during those stretches could really help.

With the blockbuster deal that the 76ers just pulled off, Anthony would slide into a fourth wheel position, which may actually best suit his current skill set.

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Statistical Projections for Anthony

Bet Current SBD’s Over/under
Points per Game in 2018 13.4 16.5
Field goal % in 2018 40.5 44.5
Minutes per Game  in 2018 29.4 33.1
FG attempts per Game in 2018 12.1 14.5
NBA seasons played, career 16 16.5

Analysis: Getting refreshed and in a presumably better situation should give Anthony an uptick in production.

But if it doesn’t pan out a third straight time on a third different team? We’re looking at the rapidly approaching near end of what’s been a mostly (statistically) great career.

Which leads us to the big one.

Will Carmelo Anthony Ever Be an NBA Champion?

Will Anthony Win an NBA Championship SBD’s Odds
YES 9/1
NO 1/9

It all depends on the situation. If ‘Melo inks a veteran’s minimum with the Golden State Warriors (don’t think they aren’t lurking – they always are!), he is almost assured a spot in the Finals.

He won’t have to do much, rather than spot duty in a reserve role, filling in minutes while the stars rest throughout the game.

Anywhere else? I don’t see it happening. And even then, a lot still has to break right to get that ring.


There was a time when Anthony was considered good enough to carry a team to a title. Now? He’s had two stops where you can argue he can’t even be the third best player on a title team.

If he doesn’t win a title, his will be one of the NBA’s most unfulfilled Hall-of-Fame careers.

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