It has been more than one year since Carmelo Anthony played his last game in the NBA and as of now, he remains available on the free agency market. Though he is no longer in his prime, Anthony still has plenty of gas left in his tank, which made most people wonder what is preventing teams from giving him a contract.
In an interview with Brandon “Scoop B” Robinson of Heavy, NBA Hall of Famer and current analyst Charles Barkley admitted that even him was “surprised” that the 10-time All-Star is not playing this season.
“I wish I can give you a legitimate answer to that,” Barkley told Robinson. “I have no idea why Carmelo is not in the NBA. I’m not gonna make up anything, but I’m surprised he’s not in the league. I thought someone would have picked him up by now, but I can’t give you a legitimate answer, to be honest with you.”
Some people think that his failed stints with the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets are the major reasons why Anthony is still unsigned. The Thunder and the Rockets added Anthony on their roster with the hope that he could help them win an NBA championship.
Unfortunately, the acquisition of Anthony did more harm than good for the Thunder and the Rockets as he struggled to fit in alongside Russell Westbrook and Paul George in Oklahoma City, and Chris Paul and James Harden in Houston.
However, since the offseason, Anthony has claimed that he’s a changed man. Compared to past years, Anthony said that he’s now willing to come off the bench and accept a reduced role on the offensive end of the floor. Anthony may no longer be a starting-caliber player, but he would still be a great addition to teams who need a boost in terms of bench scoring.
As Robinson noted, some of the NBA teams who could utilize Anthony’s services now include the Philadelphia 76ers and the Los Angeles Lakers. The Sixers and the Lakers are currently considered as title-favorites in their respective conferences, but they could still use some help from a 10-time All-Star. Anthony could give the Sixers a veteran leader, while in Los Angeles, the veteran small forward could address their need of a volume shooter in their second unit.
Though he hasn’t received any formal offer, Anthony remains optimistic that he can find a team that will allow him to continue his NBA career. As of now, he continues to go to the gym to make sure that he’s in perfect shape when and if he gets the opportunity to play this season.