The Trail Blazers signing of Carmelo Anthony captured the attention of the NBA to close the work week. Melo, a pillar of the NBA for large portions of two decades, is returning to action after a year on the sidelines. Outside of headlines, what can Melo bring to the Blazers?
The Ringer’s Dan Devine highlighted that a diminished Melo could provide Portland with a better alternative to their current rotation of power forwards.
Anthony doesn’t have to turn back the clock to help the Blazers. Even the diminished form he showed in Houston—13.4 points and 5.4 rebounds in 29.4 minutes per game on 41/33/68 shooting splits, taking more than 50 percent of his shot attempts from beyond the arc rather than insisting on midrange pull-ups as he had in his heyday—would still make him the most productive offensive frontcourt option available to Stotts.
Prior to Melo’s 10-game stint with the Rockets, he averaged 16.2 points per game on 40.4 percent shooting from the field during his season-long stay with the Thunder.
Following Zach Collins’ shoulder injury, a trio of forwards have appeared in the Blazers starting lineup. Anthony Tolliver, Mario Hezonja and Nassir Little have all made an attempt to fill the void created by Collins’ absence. Of the veterans, Tolliver is averaging 3.2 points per game and Hezonja has supplied an average 5.5 points per outing.
You can read Devine’s full assessment at The Ringer.