Where Does Carmelo Anthony Fit in the Los Angeles Lakers’ Plans?

Published 08/12/2021, 12:20 PM EDT
DENVER, CO – DECEMBER 12: Carmelo Anthony (00) of the Portland Trail Blazers prepares to face his former team the Denver Nuggets before the first quarter on Thursday, December 12, 2019. (Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)


The 2020-21 season was undoubtedly odd for the Los Angeles in many ways. After starting out as hot favorites, LeBron James and co. crumbled under pressure. The Phoenix Suns dethroned the reigning champions relatively comfortably. This meant that the management of the side had to put on their thinking caps. In the off-season, they acquired some star talent, including veteran Carmelo Anthony. But how will he come into play for the men in yellow?

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The shock exit in the playoffs made the LA staff look back in retrospect. As soon as the off-season approached, Jeanie Buss and her team put on their thinking caps. They got to work immediately and roped in the likes of Russell Westbrook and Dwight Howard. In addition, they also brought in some young talent in Malik Monk and Kendrick Nunn to bring in balance. But that was not all.

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Having just become a free agent, Carmelo Anthony caught the eyes of the Lakers team. At the age of 37, Anthony knows the NBA like bread and butter. He has been in the league for nearly two decades, being one of the most priced forwards back in the day. Nonetheless, the star has still amassed around 14.4 points on average, in the past two seasons. This makes him very crucial in the Lakers setup.

What role will Carmelo Anthony have at Los Angeles?

DENVER, CO – DECEMBER 12: Carmelo Anthony (00) of the Portland Trail Blazers backs down Will Barton (5) of the Denver Nuggets during the second quarter on Thursday, December 12, 2019. (Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

Last year, the Lakers collapsed when they needed someone outside Anthony Davis and LeBron James to step up. Another poor statistic was the side’s inability to deliver from long range. This is where Carmelo Anthony comes into play. The ageing player is powerful, accurate and confident in his spot up shooting. With the duo of James and Davis driving in, Anthony will be pivotal on the outside. In fact, the Knicks and Nuggets legend shot at nearly 41% from the 3-point line last year.

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Early on in his career, ‘Melo’ was not a fan of coming off the bench. However, he thrived in this role with Portland. Acting as an unexpected threat, Anthony was a menace for teams that were tiring out. This will also come into play for him at LA. He is perhaps best suited to be the sixth man, if not a starter. His link-up play with the numerous other superstars on the side will be very important. After all, even Westbrook flourishes in the 2-point area, more so if there is someone to feed in the passes.

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With all the star-power at their fingertips, the Los Angeles Lakers are a gigantic threat in the upcoming season. All their big players will be focused on reclaiming their lost crown. For the youngsters, it is the perfect platform to prove that they belong with the big boys. If Carmelo Anthony and his fellow Lakers fail to inspire them, very few things will!

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Sankalp Harikrishnan

230 articles

Sankalp Harikrishnan is a tennis and NBA writer at EssentiallySports. He aspires to pursue Sports Journalism and has represented his institution in cricket, badminton, football, and table tennis. Apart from his professional desires, Sankalp does voluntary service with his friends to feed hungry animals on a regular basis.

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