Carmelo Anthony's time with the Oklahoma City Thunder has now officially come to an end, just 10 months after it began. Traded to the Atlanta Hawks in a three-team trade that saw Dennis Schroder go to the Thunder, Anthony will soon be bought out and become a free agent. At that point, he's all but guaranteed to join the Houston Rockets in a quest for his first championship.
Following the trade becoming official Wednesday, Anthony spoke to ESPN's Jemele Hill about his time with the Thunder, acknowledging that it just "wasn't a good fit." Part of the problem, he lamented, was the rushed timeframe. Via ESPN:
"At the end of the day, it wasn't a good fit," he said. "I think last year -- and I haven't talked about this before -- everything was just so rushed, going to the team for media day and the day before training camp. Them guys already had something in place, and then I come along in the 25th hour like, oh s---, Melo just come on and join us. Like, you can figure it out since you've been around the game for a long time. That's why it was so inconsistent. At times, I had to figure it out on my own rather than somebody over there or people over there helping me."
Anthony is certainly correct in noting that everything was rushed in OKC. His arrival at the last minute added not only more pressure and scrutiny, but new challenges for the team and coaching staff. If Anthony had been dealt there in say, July, then perhaps things go a little bit better.
However, much of the problem came down to the fact that Anthony just isn't the same level of player he used to be. Which is certainly understandable, he's 35 years old and last season was his 15th in the league. So yes, showing up at the last minute makes things more difficult, but he also shot a career-low 40.4 percent from the field. It doesn't matter when you show up if you're going to miss that many shots.