Thunder and Carmelo Anthony Plan to Part Ways

Ruben Hill
July 8, 2018

Carmelo Anthony #7 of the Oklahoma City Thunder watches on against the Charlotte Hornets during their game at Spectrum Center on January 13, 2018 in Charlotte, North Carolina. George's deal, along with a three-year contract to bring back sixth man Jerami Grant and minimum ones for backup point guard Raymond Felton and center Nerlens Noel, would help drive the Thunder's tax bill and payroll over $300 million.

For now, according to ESPN reporters, the Thunder will first begin looking into trade possibilities with teams that will be looking to clear a ton of cap space for the summer of 2019 when players like Kyrie Irving or Klay Thompson may be available.

So, when Anthony does leave, which team will pick him up? Here are eight viable options.

Finding a trade partner willing to take on Anthony's near $28 million contract may be hard for the Thunder, but the organization could trim $107 million off its 2018-19 luxury tax bill by utilizing the stretch provision.

The Thunder, weighed down by a historic $310 million payroll and luxury tax bill, can use the stretch provision, trade him or reach a buyout agreement with the 10-time All-Star and four-time Olympian. The team also confirmed it signed Rajon Rondo and re-signed Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.

Anthony, a four-time Olympian and three-time gold medalist, is the all-time United States scoring and rebounds leader but the 10-time All-Star has struggled in 15 NBA seasons, never playing in the NBA Finals.

Should Anthony hit the open market, the two reporters say the most interested parties would be the Houston Rockets, Miami Heat and Los Angeles Lakers.

Anthony said numerous right things during his time in Oklahoma City, talking continuously about how he'd "accepted" and "sacrificed" for a role as a third banana. The Thunder will reportedly look for a way to part ways with the perennial scorer throughout this summer.

"I don't think I can be effective as that type of player", he said. He struggled during the Thunder's first-round playoff exit against the Jazz and expressed displeasure in his role. The 34-year-old averaged a career-low 16.2 points per game and shot just 40.4 percent from the field.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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