Basketball: Houston Rockets part ways with 10-time All-Star Carmelo Anthony

(REUTERS) – After on-court struggles, off-court rumours and reports of his dwindling role with the team, Carmelo Anthony is on his way out of Houston.

Rockets general manager Daryl Morey issued a statement on Thursday (Nov 15) that read: “After much internal discussion, the Rockets will be parting ways with Carmelo Anthony and we are working toward a resolution. Carmelo had a tremendous approach during his time with the Rockets and accepted every role head coach Mike D’Antoni gave him.

“The fit we envisioned when Carmelo chose to sign with the Rockets has not materialised, therefore we thought it was best to move on as any other outcome would have been unfair to him.”

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Rockets were placing the 10-time All-Star on waivers. According to Wojnarowski, Anthony’s representatives spent Monday contacting NBA front offices regarding a potential new home for Anthony.

According to that report, several GMs and their respective coaches were discussing whether Anthony could be helpful to their organisations. However, Wojnarowski noted it is a tough time of year for teams to make roster moves, and “patience” could be Anthony’s best short-term course of action.

Anthony appeared in 10 games this season, including two starts, and he averaged 13.4 points and 5.4 rebounds in 29.4 minutes.

The 34-year-old signed a one-year, US$2.4 million (S$3.3 million) veteran’s minimum contract with the Rockets after he agreed to a buyout with the Atlanta Hawks before the start of the season. Houston would be on the hook for that contract if they decide to waive him.

The Hawks acquired Anthony from the Oklahoma City Thunder in a July trade, then waived him before he played a game with the team.

The Rockets have struggled on both sides of the floor thus far this season, finally reaching the .500 plateau at 7-7 after beating the Golden State Warriors on Thursday.

Whether or not Anthony decides to continue playing or not, he will reportedly have an opportunity to play with the Puerto Rican national team.

According to Wojnarowski, Puerto Rican officials want the 10-time All-Star to know that there is an open invitation to play with the team.

Anthony’s parents are of Puerto Rican descent, and he has spent significant time in the country, which includes his charitable actions in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. However, Anthony, a New York native, has won three Olympic gold medals playing for Team USA.

The only Puerto Rican in the NBA currently is the Dallas Mavericks’ JJ Barea.

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