Carmelo Anthony hasn’t been in Portland for very long.
He only signed a non-guaranteed deal with the Trail Blazers in November after a weird year-long stretch where he was struggling to find a place to play.
Yet months later, the 17-year veteran feels right at home in Portland.
“I’m happy. I like the group a lot,” Anthony said this week, via the Portland Tribune. “When I came in, it was like a welcome-home party. I come in and it’s, ‘Thank you for coming’ from everybody.
“The coaches have been phenomenal with me. We talk almost every day about things I could do to help out with the team and with the young players, things I need to be doing. I have been on board with everyone and everything since day one.”
Anthony has averaged 16.1 points and 6.5 rebounds in 32 games so far this season with the Trail Blazers, who guaranteed the rest of his one-year, $2.2 million deal last month. The 10-time All-Star seems to have jumped right back into the league with ease — something that wasn’t always certain after the tumultuous ending to his brief time with the Houston Rockets last season, which left him stranded in free agency.
He fit right in to Portland coach Terry Stotts’ system almost instantly, too.
“When he came in, you don’t know what to expect, whether he feels like he has something to prove,” Stotts said, via the Portland Tribune. “But he fit in right away. He has taken opportunities that are there, he’s a great teammate, he passes when we need him to. He has done everything we’ve asked.”
While it’s unclear if the Trail Blazers have the desire to re-sign Anthony or offer him an extension, the 35-year-old doesn’t want this season to be his last in the league.
When the time does come to retire, though, Anthony knows he wants to do so in Portland.
“I would love to stay,” Anthony said, via the Portland Tribune. “I feel like this is the place for me to end my career. It could have happened earlier, but it didn’t. Now, where I’m at in my life and career, this is where I want to retire.”
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