With Carmelo Anthony’s revival during the 2019-20 season, it’s time to put an end to the talk about how the Houston Rockets black-balled him.
For many, the success of Carmelo Anthony brings joy, because they grew up watching ‘Melo and felt he deserved an opportunity in the league. For others, the success of Anthony is proof of how the Houston Rockets were foolish to cut ties with the 10-time All-Star.
Neither side is wrong, as everyone is entitled to their opinion, but there’s alot to be said about the latter. For starters, Anthony wasn’t happy in Houston, as he wanted a larger role.
The Rockets didn’t need Anthony to start, as they were simply adding him in hopes of adding bench depth to the team. ‘Melo has made it clear that he didn’t exactly want to be a reserve, so it seems as though the Rockets and Carmelo were both doomed from the start.
Carmelo played 29.2 minutes per game in Houston, which isn’t exactly reserve minutes, yet had his sights set on a larger role. Anthony averaged 13.4 points and 5.4 rebounds with the Rockets, while shooting 32.4 percent from downtown, which is well below the league average.
Melo wasn’t exactly a fit for the Rockets’ style of play, as he isn’t known to take the most efficient shots. In fact, Anthony had a knack for taking the mid-range shot, which is frowned upon within the Rockets’ offense.
Why it’s time to end the talk about the Rockets black-balling Carmelo
Anthony was traded to the Chicago Bulls, who subsequently waived him prior to the trade deadline, meaning that any team could have signed him if they wanted to. It seems that people have lost sight of the fact that Carmelo was a free agent and remained unsigned for the entire season.
It wasn’t just the Rockets that passed on him, the entire league did. We’d heard that the Los Angeles Lakers were interested, and the ties were there, as his long-time best friend LeBron James was donning a Lakers uniform, but the Lakers also opted not to sign Anthony.
Melo had the same results at the start of the 2019-20 season, as he remained unsigned, before the Portland Trail Blazers signed him. What’s gone forgotten is that the Blazers played 14 games before signing Anthony, meaning they essentially passed on him coming into the season too.
Carmelo turned in a solid season, as he averaged 15.4 points and 6.3 rebounds, while also shooting an impressive 38.5 percent from long-range and also making several big shots for the Blazers.
It’s great to see Anthony back in the league and making big shots, not to mention finally returning to the postseason. But let’s not forget the fact that the entire league passed on him and “black-balled him”, and not just the Houston Rockets.