Bulls Acquire Carmelo Anthony, Intend to Waive Him

    The Bulls acquired Rockets forward Carmelo Anthony and cash on Monday, according to Stadium NBA Insider Shams Charania. Chicago then plans on waiving

    January 21, 2019

    The Bulls acquired Rockets forward Carmelo Anthony and cash on Monday, according to Stadium NBA Insider Shams Charania.

    Chicago then plans on waiving Anthony, per Charania, which means Anthony will become a free agent if he clears waivers.

    Houston has been looking for a trade partner for Anthony since early November as the forward struggled to adapt to the Rockets’ system. The search for a deal heated up as Houston needed to clear a roster spot to acquire Kenneth Faried after the Nets bought out his contract. The Rockets eventually waived James Nunnally to create an opening for Faried, according to Charania, but were still looking to get rid of Anthony.

    The Bulls will get cash in the deal, but it’s surprising they didn’t attempt to snag a future draft pick from the Rockets. Chicago is in rebuild mode and can use any additional draft capital to find potential long-term contributors. Given how random the NBA Draft is, the Bulls could’ve used another selection. The Rockets don’t have many picks of value, but cash literally does nothing for Chicago on the court.

    Then again, this isn’t new for the Bulls.

    The Bulls famously traded Jordan Bell, who has been a solid role player for the Warriors, for cash considerations on draft night in 2017.

    Chicago could still hold on to Anthony until the trade deadline to look for a suitor, but every interested team will likely wait until the forward is waived.

    For Anthony, this move allows him to survey the landscape for his next stop. He will be able to weigh his options as rosters continue to shake out near the trade deadline before looking to sign with a team.

    Anthony averaged 13.4 points and 5.4 rebounds per game in 10 contests before the Rockets decided he didn’t fit their plans. He recorded a career-low 16.2 points per game last season in Oklahoma City and looks to be declining quickly. While Anthony could still have value as a veteran leader and second-unit scorer, it’s hard to see a contending team bring him on this late in the season.

    The Rockets saved a luxury tax bill and freed up a roster spot as they continue to battle it out for playoff position in the Western Conference. Anthony was supposed to give the team a second-unit scoring threat when the 3-pointers didn’t fall, but the Rockets were struggling with him on the court.

    This has been an odd year for the Hall of Fame forward, who will be linked with a fifth (and likely sixth) team in a matter of three seasons. Anthony was briefly part of the Hawks in a trade involving Dennis Schroder earlier in the year before joining Houston.

    Anthony was once recruited to Chicago as a free agent to be part of a contending team with Derrick Rose. Now, he’s been traded to the Windy City with cash as the sweetener.

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