USA Basketball rejects Anthony's request to play at World Cup

Ross Houston
August 10, 2019

USA Basketball managing director Jerry Colangelo told Sports Illustrated that Anthony, through a representative, requested to play for Team USA in the 2019 FIBA World Cup.

Anthony has been unable to find an National Basketball Association team during this summer's free agency period after an unsuccessful 10-game stretch with the Houston Rockets in 2018 ended with Anthony being traded to the Chicago Bulls and released soon after.

"But for where we are and what we're doing, that conceivably could have been a distraction". Anthony might not have been good enough to make the team, but he's certainly contributed enough to at least be granted an opportunity.

Anthony, 35, ranks as USA Basketball's all-time leader in career points, rebounds, and games played, with three Olympic gold medals to his name. He's trying to re-establish himself.

The New York Knicks were interested in bringing him back but only if they landed two big free agents in the offseason but both their primary targets, Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, chose to join rivals Brooklyn Nets instead, which likely ended Anthony's chances of signing with his former team.

Anthony is arguably the most successful player in men's USA Basketball history.

Anthony was released by the Rockets last season just a few weeks after his 2018-19 campaign began, and no other team elected to take a flier on him. However, Boeheim still thinks he can be of value to an NBA team, which he recently stated on SiriusXM NBA Radio.

"I had to speak up for 'Melo - he should be on that team", Cuban said.

"Last year, we invited everybody to Vegas".

"The focus has to be on who's here - not who's not here", Colangelo said.

Cuban ends the segment echoing Harper's comments about Anthony potentially being a distraction to the team.

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