After the Thunder were eliminated in the first round of the postseason in April, Anthony was adamant that he wouldn't accept a reserve role if he had returned to Oklahoma City in 2018-19. The Thunder ultimately parted ways with Anthony after he exercised his $28 million player option earlier this offseason, trading him to Atlanta in July before the Hawks waived him shortly after the acquisition. Anthony then agreed to continue his career in Houston, where it was expected that he would slot in as the club's starting power forward. It appears that the Rockets have since called an audible on that plan, but the bench move shouldn't dramatically hinder Anthony's fantasy value, assuming he's receptive to the assignment. Anthony looks poised to serve as the go-to scorer for the second unit for a few spurts per game while still logging plenty of time alongside James Harden and Chris Paul as a supplementary option on offense. Riding shotgun with two of the NBA's elite playmakers should translate to plenty of quality looks from the outside for Anthony, who saw his efficiency crater in the Thunder's more stagnant offense last season.
Anthony's intentions to join the Rockets have been a badly kept secret, as the move was essentially a foregone conclusion following his trade to Atlanta. Things didn't mesh as anticipated during his first, and now only, campaign in Oklahoma City last season. Acting largely as a spot-up shooter, Anthony averaged the fewest points (16.2) and assists (1.3) of his career without gaining efficiency. It remains to be seen what his role in Houston will be, but he'll presumably start and be a major cog in one of the league's most potent offenses.
Anthony has cleared waivers Wednesday and is soon expected to sign a one-year, $2.4 million deal with the Rockets, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports.
Clearing waivers is just another formality, as it was expected that Anthony would be bought out as soon as his trade to the Hawks was completed. The move to Houston doesn't come as a surprise either, as it was reported several days after the completed trade that he was preparing to sign with the Rockets. Now, we simply wait for Anthony to put pen to paper on the one-year pact.
Anthony and the Hawks finalized a buyout agreement Monday, which will make Anthony a free agent once he clears waivers, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports.
Anthony was never going to play for the Hawks, who took on his massive salary earlier in July as part of a deal that sent Dennis Schroder to OKC and netted the Hawks a protected future first-round pick. The veteran will give back roughly $2.4 million of his $27.9 million salary for next season, which is equal to the veteran's minimum contract he's expected to ink with the Houston Rockets later this week. He'll have to wait 48 hours to clear waivers, but once that happens -- it'll likely be Wednesday morning -- Anthony will be free to sign with the Rockets, joining Chris Paul and James Harden on what was the best regular season team in the league last season. Anthony is coming off of a disappointing season with the Thunder in which he averaged 16.2 points on 40.4 percent shooting from the field -- both career-lows by a fair margin.
Anthony, who was traded in principle to the Hawks last week, intends to sign a one-year, $2.4 million contract with the Rockets once he clears waivers in the coming days, Mark Stein of The New York Times reports.
Houston was widely believed to be the frontrunner for Anthony's services after it was reported earlier in the month that Oklahoma City intended to part ways with the 10-time All-Star. The Thunder ultimately shipped Anthony to the Hawks last week in a three-team trade that remains pending until the 76ers make another roster move. Once the trade is official, the Hawks will part ways with Anthony, allowing him to head back to the Western Conference and join a potent Houston offense. Anthony seems likely to slot into a starting role at forward for the Rockets, filling the vacancy that was opened by Trevor Ariza's departure for Phoenix earlier in the offseason. The 34-year-old, who attempted 6.1 three-pointers per game in 2018-19 -- the second-highest average of his career -- should again get a healthy amount of long-range shots as he joins one of the NBA's most prolific outside shooting teams.
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