With all of the big names in free agency having long signed with new teams or re-signed with their old ones, former NBA scoring champion Carmelo Anthony has been dominating the headlines in recent days. This has been especially true in the aftermath of last week’s interview with ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith, as the 35-year-old Anthony admitted to the First Take host on Friday that he and his representatives have spoken to a number of NBA teams about possibly joining them. But which team would be the best fit for the onetime superstar forward as he hopes to keep his career going into its 17th season?
CBS Sports sought to answer this question on Monday by ranking all 30 NBA teams from best to worst fit and noting that there’s still a chance Anthony will remain a free agent for the entire 2019-20 season. The outlet pointed out that Anthony’s subpar three-point shooting stroke and lack of defensive ability could turn several teams off of him, but added that he is still capable of creating his own shot and fitting in with a new team, as long as he’s willing to accept a lesser role than what he’s used to.
Talking about the usual teams that have been linked to Anthony over the past several months, CBS Sports ranked the last two teams the 10-time All-Star small forward had played for – the Houston Rockets and Oklahoma City Thunder – at 30th and 29th, respectively, speculating that neither team would be interested in taking him back due to how troublesome his stints were with both organizations.
The Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers — who were both mentioned by Anthony in his interview with ESPN, per The Inquisitr — were ranked at 14th and 13th due to their empty roster spots. However, CBS Sports wrote that the Lakers likely would have long made a move for Anthony if they really wanted him and that the Clippers are “too analytically inclined” to use an open roster spot on the forward.
— Lakers Nation (@LakersNation) August 2, 2019
As for the team that could serve as the best fit for Carmelo Anthony, CBS Sports wrote that the defending NBA champion Toronto Raptors could make the best use of his talents, especially his skills as a ball-dominant, isolation-oriented player.
“This is an organization that knows how to support ball-dominant players,” CBS Sports opined.
“They could surround Anthony with great defense and spacing whenever he takes the floor. Like the [Philadelphia] 76ers, the Raptors are well-situated to accentuate his strengths and minimize his weaknesses, but they have lower ambitions and more credit with their fan base after winning the championship.
As Kawhi Leonard spurned the Raptors to sign a three-year contract with the Los Angeles Clippers last month, the two-time Defensive Player of the Year has some pretty big shoes to fill at the small forward position. If Anthony does sign with Toronto, he will be joining a small forward rotation that may include new acquisitions Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Stanley Johnson, but as CBS Sports stressed, all of the fits it mentioned in its report are merely “hypothetical” unless one team actually makes a move for the former All-Star.