Carmelo Anthony told to SNUB Lakers for Western Conference rival | Other | Sport


That’s according to Tracy McGrady.

The 34-year-old has been linked to the Lakers to link up with close friend LeBron James since the Houston Rockets shelved him back in November.

Anthony has endured miserables back-to-back spells with the Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston which have cast doubts over his future in the NBA.

He played just 10 times for the Rockets before he was traded to the Chicago Bulls and then immediately waived.

The former New York Knicks great is the marquee name on the open market but is coming off a spell in which he had career lows in points and assists in Houston.

Yet the Lakers are looking to recruit a free agent to fill an available spot on their roster after trading away Ivica Zubac and Michael Beasley to the LA Clippers in return for Mike Muscala before the deadline.

And given LeBron’s ties with ‘Melo, L.A. is the small forward’s expected landing spot with multiple reports confirming the Lakers are interested.

Brad Turner of the Los Angeles Times reported that the Lakers have ‘warmed up to the possibility’ of signing Anthony despite initially distancing themselves from a deal.

Yet McGrady – briefly a team-mate of ‘Melo’s in 2010 – believes Portland would actually be a better fit for the veteran.

Asked who should pick up Anthony in the buy-out market, McGrady told The Jump on ESPN: “The Portland Trail Blazers.

“He could be their third scorer, playing with those two phenomenal guards and a big man who is a great passer. 

“Melo can play inside. He doesn’t have to change his style of play. 

“That’s why I think it didn’t work out in OKC and it didn’t work out in Houston. 

“Melo is a mid-range type player, mid-post, he needs the ball. 

“Playing with Dame [Damian Lillard] and C.J. [McCollum], being that third option for them, I think it’s a perfect fit in Portland.”

While the Lakers are outside of the playoff picture in the Western Conference, the Trail Blazers are 32-21 and currently occupy fourth spot in the standings. They are two games back on the Thunder in third.

ESPN reporter Ramona Shelburne says the Lakers will consider their options before deciding whether or not to sign ‘Melo.

She said: “The Lakers are like all the rest of the teams who consider themselves contenders. 

“I don’t know if you can call them contenders these days when they’re not even in the playoffs but they still think of themselves that way. 

“They’re going to look at everyone on the buy-out market. I think they still need shooting. 

“From what I’m told they have a preference to get someone who has been playing. He hasn’t played since November 8th. He’s not exactly game-ready right now. 

“Someone who gets bought out is someone who has been playing up until a couple days ago. 

“Wayne Ellington’s a guy you should watch. Melo is an option but it is going to take shape over how the buy-out market works out.”

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