Carmelo Anthony did not play in the Houston Rockets’ loss to the San Antonio Spurs on Saturday night due to an illness and is set to miss their game Sunday night against the Pacers as well. According to a report from the New York Times‘ Marc Stein, those absences could be a prelude to Anthony being waived.
Stein’s report follows multiple reports on Saturday night about Anthony’s future with the Rockets. Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Anthony and the team were “discussing his role.”
A short time later, Shams Charania added that the illness may not have been so real while saying that the Rockets are “seriously weighing” Anthony’s roster situation.
When the Houston Rockets made the decision to sign Carmelo Anthony after his buyout this summer, the move was widely panned by fans and analysts alike. Anthony is nowhere near the player he used to be and seemed to take an especially big step back last season with the Oklahoma City Thunder. His regression offensively, coupled with the fact that he’s never been a great defender, made it hard to figure how he’d help replace the likes of Trevor Ariza and Luc Mbah a Moute.
Through the first few weeks of the season, it’s clear that those who were down on the signing were right. Anthony has played in 10 games for the Rockets this season, starting two of them, and is once again struggling on both ends of the floor. He’s shooting just 40.5 percent from the field overall and 32.8 percent from 3-point land. It hasn’t helped that the Rockets are off to a 4-7 start following their loss to the Spurs.
While neither report goes so far as to say what these discussions mean, it’s hard to come to any other conclusion besides the Rockets considering waiving Anthony. Given how he’s played this season it’s hard to fathom another team giving up any assets to acquire him, and it’s unlikely either side would be happy with a benching.