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Marks Details Blazers’ Options for Pursuing Melo

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ESPN NBA contributor Bobby Marks explained the options that the Trial Blazers have this offseason.

Portland Trail Blazers v Phoenix Suns Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Carmelo Anthony’s successful season with the Trial Blazers has everyone wondering if the 36-year-old forward will return to Portland for another run. Since the Blazers’ Game 5 loss to the Lakers on Saturday, Melo has expressed that he hopes to return to Rip City for another season.

Intentions and hopes aside, ESPN’s Bobby Marks detailed the tools that President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey has at his disposal when pursuing Melo (with the current roster construction in mind).

Because he was on a one-year contract, Portland can offer Anthony a starting salary of $3.0 million, the $3.6 million biannual exception or use part of their $9.3 million midlevel exception.

In 58 regular season appearances, Melo averaged 15.4 points and 6.3 rebounds per game. In the postseason, the former Syracuse star produced 15.2 points per game in five outings against LeBron James and the Lakers.

Along with looking at Melo’s future, Marks touched on the potential for an early extension for the bubble’s breakout star, Gary Trent Jr.

Not getting drafted in the first round is likely going to benefit Trent financially. He signed a three-year contract and not the standard four-year rookie scale for players selected in the first round, so Trent is now eligible to sign an extension this offseason.

In the seeding games and playoffs, Trent averaged 16.9 points, shooting 50.7% from 3. Portland should offer the maximum allowed: four years, $51 million.

You can read Marks’ complete rundown of the offseason that looms ahead for the Blazers at ESPN+ (subscription required).