Breaking: Thunder looking to part ways with Carmelo Anthony
The Oklahoma City Thunder are hoping to find a way out of a gigantic $310 million expense tied to the team’s salary and will look into the potential to part ways with forward Carmelo Anthony at some point this summer, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Royce Young.
The Thunder could look at a stretch-and-waive provision, which would allow for his salary to be paid over the course of several years, or using a buyout and stretch, which would work in a similar fashion.
The stretch provision would eliminate a staggering $107 million of their already suffocating 2018-19 payroll and tax bill. By stretching, OKC would eliminate $90 million off their tax bill, going from $150 million to $60 million.
Another possibility is to trade him to another team, which would then likely waive Anthony, allowing him to hit free agency.
Anthony has resisted the idea of coming off the bench and has proved to be a poor fit alongside stars Russell Westbrook and Paul George, used as a third-option after being the first and only during his first 14 seasons with the Denver Nuggets and the New York Knicks.
The transition and the chemistry has been quite poor in his lone year in OKC after being traded by the Knicks only days before the start of the regular season.
The Thunder had seemingly made a decision on this after signing Jerami Grant (who plays Anthony’s power forward position) to a three-year, $27 million deal shortly after Paul George announced his return to OKC over a four-year, $137 million deal.
Anthony is owed a whopping $27.9 million after opting into the last year of his gigantic deal and the Thunder will look to clear that off their books.
While that won’t make too much of a difference in the amount tied into the next few years contractually, it will help keep this year’s payroll from burning ownerships’ pockets with a player that just doesn’t fit the franchise’s vision moving forward.