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Jerry Colangelo says no to Carmelo Anthony on Team USA as potential distraction

Georgia Tech v Georgia

ATHENS, GA - NOVEMBER 24: NBA free agent Carmelo Anthony watches play from the sidelines between the Georgia Bulldogs and the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets on November 24, 2018 at Sanford Stadium in Athens, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)

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Carmelo Anthony is not with an NBA team, and his time in the league is perhaps over. Folks have wondered aloud whether the Los Angeles Lakers would reunite the former New York Knicks and Denver Nuggets star with LeBron James, but the Lakers have reportedly been uninterested in his services.

Team USA is heading into the World Cup this summer, and it’s also been put forth that Anthony could play for his country once again. In fact, Anthony reportedly requested to play for Team USA this year, but it was a no-go.

According to Jerry Colangelo, Anthony’s request was denied because it was thought that he might be a distraction to the team.

Via SI’s Chris Mannix:

“I love Carmelo,” Colangelo said. “He made a great contribution. He was a very good international player. But for where we are and what we’re doing, that conceivably could have been a distraction. I understand why the request was made. He’s trying to reestablish himself. I think that has to be done in the [NBA].”

Anthony is a 4-time Olympic medalist and played on the national team from 2004 to 2016.

This is a young USA team that doesn’t have superstars, and Anthony coming in as a veteran mentor seems far-fetched.What’s more likely is that Anthony would come in and try to steal some of the spotlight with non-team play as a means to audition for another NBA gig. That’s probably what Colangelo was thinking, anyway.

I still don’t know if Anthony is really done in the NBA. The question is whether Carmelo is willing to take a minimum salary deal, which is where he’s at in his career. The NBA is wild, so don’t rule out seeing Anthony in an NBA jersey once again.