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#pounditThursday, May 13, 2021

Carmelo Anthony says bench role moving forward is ‘out of the question’

You can’t teach an old Melo new tricks apparently.

Speaking Saturday after the Oklahoma City Thunder were eliminated by the Utah Jazz in the first round of the playoffs, Carmelo Anthony got a question about if he would consider the idea of coming off the bench going forward.

“I’m not sacrificing,” replied the 10-time All-Star, according to Fred Katz of the Norman Transcript. “No bench. That’s out of the question.

“I think the player they wanted me to be and needed me to be was for the sake of this season,” Anthony also said about his role. “As far as being effective as that type of player, I don’t think I can be effective as that type of player.”

The 33-year-old Anthony did venture into new territory during his first season with the Thunder, playing in more of an off-ball, stretch 4 capacity. However, he responded by producing the worst statistical year of his career, averaging 16.2 points per game on 40.1 percent shooting during the regular season and a brutal 11.8 points per game on 37.5 shooting in the playoffs. Anthony did still start every single game he played though, despite OKC being demonstrably better when Jerami Grant or Patrick Patterson was on the floor instead.

Anthony has a $27.9 million player option with the Thunder for next season, so he has every reason to pick it up. On the bright side for the team though, Anthony did recently hint that he was open to at least some form of sacrifice.


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