The Trail Blazers made waves on Thursday evening by signing free agent forward Carmelo Anthony to a non-guaranteed contract. The Blazers, who have a 4-8 record to start the year, turned to the 35-year-old forward to provide a boost to their forward rotation. Following the news, CBS Sports contributor Brad Botkin reached out to a handful of NBA contacts to gauge the reaction from those working in the league.
One Western Conference scout explained to Botkin that Melo’s addition is far from a game-changing move, but the anonymous scout was optimistic about the impact it will have on Portland’s floor spacing.
“It isn’t anything to get overly excited about, but if [Melo] can still make some shots and stretch the floor, which I think he can, that’s a weapon that can be utilized next to [Damian] Lillard and [CJ] McCollum,” one Western Conference scout said. “And I personally don’t think there will be any problem this time around with him accepting his role or anything like maybe we saw on some of his last few stops. He obviously missed playing basketball, and I think you’ll see a guy who wants this to work.”
A scout from the Eastern Conference responded with a measured assessment regarding Melo’s production in the twilight of his career.
“Portland is trying to quickly solve their problems in the front court,” an Eastern Conference scout told CBS Sports, via text, Thursday night. “Not sure how much [Melo] has left. Last time he played he couldn’t move well. More noticeable on defense. Portland needs a four badly and another player who can put points on the board. I am sure he will be able to score.”
From Melo’s last appearance with Rockets to the announcement of his signing, 372 days have transpired.
You can read Botkin’s full post at CBS Sports.