Ever since he was officially removed from the Houston Rockets’ rotation, Carmelo Anthony has been frequently mentioned in NBA rumors involving the Los Angeles Lakers. Anthony is a close pal of Lakers superstar LeBron James, who publicly stated his desire of having the 10-time NBA All-Star in Los Angeles. However, James said that he will just let Lakers President of Basketball Operations Magic Johnson and General Manager Rob Pelinka decide whether they want to sign Anthony or not.
There are only a few days left before the March 1 playoff-eligibility waiver deadline and Carmelo Anthony is yet to find a new home. The Lakers opened up one roster spot when they traded Ivica Zubac and Michael Beasley to the Los Angeles Clippers in exchange for Mike Muscala before the February NBA trade deadline, but according to Brandon “Scoob B” Robinson of Heavy.com, signing Carmelo Anthony is not a priority for the Lakers.
“Carmelo Anthony would’ve been the Lakers top buyout target had they depleted their roster in an Anthony Davis trade. Now that the Lakers brought in Bullock & Muscala, Melo isn’t as much of a top priority as before, I’m hearing.”
If they had succeeded in acquiring Anthony Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans before the February NBA trade deadline, the Lakers would have prioritized claiming Carmelo Anthony from the buyout market. The Lakers’ final offer, which reportedly included Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma, to the Pelicans would have left them with a thin frontcourt depth which could be addressed by acquiring Anthony.
After Magic Johnson told Dell Demps on Tuesday morning he was finished making offers and moving on, the two sides never spoke again. The Lakers did make a trade that could clear the way for Carmelo Anthony. https://t.co/6LUS9jbpei— Tania Ganguli (@taniaganguli) February 7, 2019
Carmelo Anthony may have failed to make himself fit playing alongside Russell Westbrook and Paul George in Oklahoma and Chris Paul and James Harden in Houston, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the same thing would happen when he teams up with LeBron James in Los Angeles. James has a reputation for making his teammates better and there is a strong chance that he could also help Anthony revive his NBA career.
Unfortunately, it is less likely that fans will be seeing LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony play together in one team in the 2018-19 NBA season. With Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma sharing the frontcourt with James, signing Anthony doesn’t make much sense. The potential acquisition of Anthony would undeniably help the Lakers boost their performance in terms of bench scoring, but the veteran small forward is a defensive liability.
As of now, the Lakers are keeping an eye on other players who are or will be available on the buyout market. Some of their potential targets include Zach Randolph and DeAndre Jordan.