There was a time when Carmelo Anthony was great at basketball.
Coming off an NCAA title with Syracuse, Anthony was drafted third overall by the Nuggets and went on to score at least 20 points a game in 13 straight seasons.
That was until last year, when he averaged 16.2 points a game playing third fiddle to Russell Westbrook and Paul George with the Thunder. He shot just 40 percent from the field and 35 percent from three (6.1 attempts a game).
So why on earth would the Sixers — as was reported by The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor — be interested in the 34-year-old forward?
That’s a great question. One I don’t really have an answer to.
First of all, the Sixers’ roster is pretty much set. In fact, they have too many players currently signed for the 2018-19 season. They also have virtually no cap space, meaning 'Melo would have to sign for the minimum. This is the same dude that literally laughed when he was asked if he’d be willing to come off the bench in Oklahoma City. Now he’s going to be willing to take the vet minimum to come here?
Secondly, the Rockets are without a doubt the most logical destination (Banana Boat Team!). They’re also tight on cap space, but if you’re Anthony, Houston represents a better scenario if he’s interested in winning. It already has James Harden and Chris Paul and took the defending champs to seven games in the Western Conference Finals. The signing of 'Melo wouldn’t make the Sixers favorites to win the East, so why not join up with your old buddy Paul and try to take down the Warriors?
Then there’s fit. At this point in his career, Anthony is a stretch four and no longer a wing. So where does he fit in with Dario Saric, and the recently-acquired Wilson Chandler and Nemanja Bjelica? As mentioned earlier, Anthony is coming off the least efficient — and the worst shooting — season of his career. How much would he add to the team’s core of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons?
And 'Melo doesn’t exactly seem like the mentoring type. He seems like the kind of guy that would be more concerned about his minutes and shots than about taking Markelle Fultz under his wing. I could be wrong and maybe 'Melo does just that, relating to Fultz about the pressure of being a high pick. I just don’t see it.
With all that said, there’s value in taking a shot on a former NBA scoring champ. He can create his own shot, something the Sixers seriously lack. And maybe he would play nice and help some of the team’s young pieces take their game to the next level. Would it be worth kicking the tires on? Possibly.
But in the end, the cons seem to strongly outweigh the pros. The Sixers need more scoring, but they’re better served betting on Fultz to make a leap in Year 2 and for Embiid and Simmons to take their game to another level.
Let 'Melo stay out West and Trust the Process.
More on the Sixers