Carmelo Anthony Won't Come Off Bench Until He's 'Ready to Take That Role'

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJuly 26, 2018

Oklahoma City Thunder forward Carmelo Anthony shouts to his team during the second half of Game 3 in an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Utah Jazz on Saturday, April 21, 2018, in Salt Lake City. The Jazz won 115-102. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
Rick Bowmer/Associated Press

Carmelo Anthony refused to come off the bench last season with the Oklahoma City Thunder and doesn't appear willing to do it this year—unless it's his choice.

Anthony said Wednesday, per Jemele Hill of The Undefeated:

"I know how to play this game of basketball. I've been playing it for a long time. When I feel like I'm ready to take that role, then I'll take that role. Only I know when it's best for me to take that role. I'm not going to do that in a situation where I still know my capabilities and what I can do. And at the end of the day, the people who really matter know my capabilities and what I can still do. You start getting to the media and debates, it's going to always be kind of back-and-forth."

The 10-time All-Star has started all 1,054 games he has played in the NBA, and he never considered being a sixth man for the Thunder after an offseason trade from the New York Knicks:

His mindset didn't change after the season despite his career-low 16.2 points per game and 40.4 field-goal percentage.

Video Play Button
Videos you might like

"I'm not sacrificing no bench role," he said in April, per Royce Young of ESPN.com. "So that's out of the question."

The choice might no longer be his as he moves on to the next chapter of his career.

OKC traded Anthony to the Atlanta Hawks, but he appears set to join the Houston Rockets after an expected buyout, per Marc Stein of the New York Times.

Although it's clear he sees his value in the starting lineup, a contending team such as Houston might find him better suited for the second unit.

Related

    LeBron Using Last Name on Uni

    James says he won’t use one of the league’s approved messages on the back of his jersey, but he commends those doing so

    NBA logo
    NBA

    LeBron Using Last Name on Uni

    Mike Chiari
    via Bleacher Report

    Ranking Top 100 NBA Players ⭐

    @AndrewDBailey and @danfavale finish our series by ranking the top 100 players this season ⬇️

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Ranking Top 100 NBA Players ⭐

    Andy Bailey and Dan Favale
    via Bleacher Report

    The Biggest Blemish on Every Top-10 NBA Star's Resume

    Every star has baggage to overcome that may elevate their perception 🤔

    NBA logo
    NBA

    The Biggest Blemish on Every Top-10 NBA Star's Resume

    Dan Favale
    via Bleacher Report

    Report: Woj Suspended Without Pay by ESPN

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Report: Woj Suspended Without Pay by ESPN

    Paul Kasabian
    via Bleacher Report