Although the Brooklyn Nets currently do not have any way to sign him to a guaranteed contract ahead of the 2019-20 NBA season, it appears that many of the team’s players remain hopeful about the possibility of 10-time All-Star Carmelo Anthony joining them at some point in the upcoming regular-season campaign.
On Wednesday, SNY‘s Ian Begley reported that “several” Nets players are still in favor of Brooklyn signing Anthony as a free agent, despite the fact that the team will be entering training camp toward the end of the month with a complete roster of 15 players on guaranteed contracts. While this would prevent the Nets from offering a deal to the 35-year-old forward, Begley noted that the organization could theoretically make a move for him early on in the 2019-20 regular season.
As explained, veteran Nets forward Wilson Chandler will be missing the first 25 games of the regular season due to a violation of the NBA’s policies on performance-enhancing drugs. As the Nets would be able to place him on the inactive list by the fifth game of his suspension, that would allow them to fill the vacancy on their active roster by signing Anthony – or any other available free agent at the time – to a “traditional” NBA contract. However, it was also pointed out that if Brooklyn goes this route, the team would have to cut someone else to make way for Chandler once his suspension ends.
Alternately, Begley wrote that the Nets also have the option of offering Anthony a training camp contract at any time, which would allow him to attend camp and suit up for preseason games. Currently, the Nets have 17 players out of the maximum 20 allowed in training camp, though it remains unclear whether Brooklyn general manager Sean Marks is interested in signing the former NBA scoring leader.
???? Carmelo Anthony could help an NBA team this season pic.twitter.com/gPwa98gZnR— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) September 14, 2019
“Anthony can be added on a training camp deal, waived prior to the regular season, and then re-signed when Chandler is moved to the inactive list,” the SNY writer further explained.
Rumors linking Anthony to Brooklyn have been swirling since August, when SNY‘s Begley, together with colleague Anthony Puccio, reported that the veteran forward took part in “informal” workouts in Los Angeles with other Nets players, with recent addition Kyrie Irving supposedly organizing the sessions. It was also believed at the time that the Nets have “plenty of insight” into Anthony’s fit as a potential addition to the roster, due to the fact that Irving and fellow summer-2019 signees Kevin Durant and DeAndre Jordan once joined forces with “Melo” on Team USA in the 2016 Olympics.