NBA Rumors: Carmelo Anthony Was Expected To Join LeBron James’ L.A. Lakers Last Season

LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers and Carmelo Anthony #7 of the Houston Rockets wait for and inbound at Staples Center on October 20, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.
Harry How / Getty Images

It has been 10 months since Carmelo Anthony played his last game in the NBA. Since being waived by the Chicago Bulls to become an unrestricted free agent, the 10-time All-Star is yet to find a team that will enable him to continue his NBA career. Still, Anthony remains optimistic that there will be teams who will give him the opportunity to showcase his talent in the 2019-20 season.

Since the start of the 2019 NBA offseason, Anthony has already been linked to numerous NBA teams, including the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers may already have LeBron James, Kyle Kuzma, and Anthony Davis as their starting frontcourt players, but they could still use some help from a multiple-time All-Star to boost their bench scoring. Though the Anthony-to-Lakers rumors somewhat died down, with mere days remaining before the 2019-20 regular season begins on October 22, Baxter Holmes of ESPN revealed that the veteran small forward was highly expected to team up with LeBron James in Los Angeles from the time his stint with the Rockets came to an end last season.

“The Rockets hope that parting ways with Anthony quickly might allow him to join another team. Morey delivers the news to Anthony in San Antonio the day before the Rockets are to play the Spurs — though publicly, the team would say only that Anthony was out for the next three games because of an ‘illness.’ In the days and weeks to come, rumors surface of Anthony potentially joining other franchises, and one source close to Anthony says he believes Melo will be joining the Lakers midseason.”

Carmelo Anthony was indeed close to signing with the Lakers last season. During that time, the Lakers were in dire need of another reliable scoring option that could help James carry the team in the Western Conference Playoffs. Unfortunately, when the Lakers continued losing games and chances of earning a playoff spot in the Western Conference kept dwindling, Anthony no longer pushed forward with his plan to join the Lakers.

As of now, it remains a big question mark if the Lakers still have any interest in bringing Carmelo Anthony to Los Angeles. After suffering much disappointment in LeBron James’ first season wearing the purple and gold, the Lakers became aggressive in upgrading their roster in the 2019 NBA offseason, where they successfully acquired their second superstar in Anthony Davis and defensive-minded veterans who could also improve their floor spacing. The Lakers are still aiming to improve their wing rotation, but they are currently keeping an eye on another veteran, Andre Iguodala of the Memphis Grizzlies.

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