Αfter much speculation, SNY's Ian Begley refuted the idea that Carmelo Anthony will be returning to the Knicks any time soon.
Let's get this out of the way at the top: things can always change, but most executives monitoring Anthony's free agency see the Lakers as the most likely destination for the 10-time All-Star.
There may have been interest from New York in a reunion with Anthony if they had a roster with multiple stars ready to win immediately. But with Durant injured and the odds against the Knicks building that kind of team this summer, bringing Anthony back is not currently part of the team's thinking.
Yes, the Lakers, who are filling out their roster with low-cost shooters, are certainly the team with the highest interest of bringing him on. With LeBron James and Anthony Davis, Anthony would play a minimal role off the bench for them, where his isolation play could prove valuable for them.
Unfortunately, it doesn't seem as if he is in the team's plans right now, and it may push him to a harsh conclusion in the end. In an interview with Taryn Finley of the Huffington Post, the 10x All-Star is already making peace with the fact that this could really be it for him...
“I’m sure [retirement is] coming soon. I’d be sitting lying to you if I said it’s not coming soon. I think I want it to come soon. I don’t think I want to do this forever, but because you love it so much, it’s hard to give it up. At the end of the day, at anything you do, when it’s your time to go, it’s your time to go. But as long as you feel good with that.”
Carmelo's age, poor efficiency, and failure to adapt have kept him away from an NBA roster since his 10-day stint with the Rockets ended. If he can hone his skills and take on a reduced role, he may find teams more willing to consider taking on his services next season.
If not, don't be surprised if we have already seen him play his last minute on an NBA basketball court.