The 2003 NBA draft was one of the most legendary ones. Who knew we’ll get big stars like LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony in the same draft?. Cleveland Cavaliers got the first selection in the draft lottery. But talking about it in an interview at that time, Carmelo mentioned that he thought it was “rigged.”
That draft produced several other NBA greats as well. The likes of Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade were also drafted the same year. The first pick was LeBron James, made by Cleveland chairman Gordon Gund. The second and third were by Detroit Pistons and Denver Nuggets, respectively.
Carmelo Anthony was the third overall pick by the Nuggets. The young boy from Syracuse University won an NCAA championship the same year. He was also named the NCAA Freshman of the Year.
On lottery day, Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James were featured in an interview by ESPN’s Mike Tirico. When asked about the duo’s relationship from before, LeBron said, “Me and Carmelo, we met a couple of years back and right from then we were friends…I think when two good players just stick together…it makes it a lot more better.”
When Carmelo was questioned whether they’ll continue to speak to each other after the lottery, Melo gave a statement. “I kind of knew that Cleveland (Cavaliers) will get the No.1 pick. I think they rigged it.” And knowing it could cause trouble for him, he hilariously added, “Nah, don’t quote me on that.”
Mike Tirico and LeBron James found it hilarious.
Though in humor, but as a rookie, that was a big statement to make. Well, nobody knows how much that is true, but Cleveland did get their homeboy in 2003. LeBron became the Rookie of the Year that season.
In the years to come, the King did get a championship for the Cavaliers in 2016. He is a three-time champion and four-time MVP by now. Recently he signed with the Lakers and is looking to grab the trophy this year as well.
Get notified about breaking news and watch highlights on the go; join the Arena on NBA Hoops