Carmelo Anthony Rumors: Blazers Free Agent 'Weighing Interest' From Lakers, Knicks

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVAugust 3, 2021

PORTLAND, OREGON - JUNE 03: Carmelo Anthony #00 of the Portland Trail Blazers shoots against the Denver Nuggets in the second quarter during Round 1, Game 6 of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Moda Center on June 03, 2021 in Portland, Oregon. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
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Free-agent forward Carmelo Anthony is reportedly weighing interest from the New York Knicks and Los Angeles Lakers.

Marc Stein reported the future Hall of Famer is considering both a return to New York and teaming up with longtime friend LeBron James in Los Angeles. Anthony played the last two seasons for the Portland Trail Blazers, finding a niche as a quality role player after making adjustments to his post-prime game.

While Anthony told reporters that he "found a home" in Portland before re-upping for a one-year deal last season, it's apparent that he's either willing to test the waters of free agency or the team's interest in bringing him back has been tepid.

The Lakers, seemingly determined to field an all-30-and-over team next season, would finally give James and Anthony their chance to play together. Anthony would fill a desperate need for shooting help on the perimeter, but his defensive deficiencies could be hard to mask on an older team.

The Lakers can't be particularly picky adding role players to the roster, because they are equipped with only a taxpayer mid-level exception and minimum contracts.

It's possible they wind up signing-and-trading Dennis Schroder and Alex Caruso, but Schroder doesn't appear to have found much interest early in free agency and the Chicago Bulls would be able to sign Caruso outright. The Lakers should be hopeful the Bulls want to retain their mid-level exception for another player and agree to a sign-and-trade.

Anthony returning to New York would be an interesting homecoming, albeit one with no championship hopes. The Knicks could likely offer Anthony a more solid role—and a chance to write his own final chapter with the team–but it's fair to wonder if he wants to go out playing for a middling roster that will be fighting for a playoff spot.