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Carmelo Anthony on Rockets Release: ‘I Didn’t Like How That Went Down’

The Rockets released Carmelo Anthony after he played in only 10 games with the team last season.

Carmelo Anthony is shedding some new light on the events that surrounded his surprise release from the Rockets last season.

Anthony spoke with Stephen A. Smith on ESPN’s First Take on Friday to discuss being released by the Rockets after playing only 10 games with the team in 2018.

“I was surprised by it big time. It went from ‘oh this is the piece that we want, this is the piece that we need,'” he said. “So I get there and I’m thinking that everything is good…and then the tenth game came and I just didn’t understand where that came from. I actually reached out to [Rockets general manager] Daryl [Morey] first.”

Anthony unknowingly played in his final game with the Rockets against his previous team, the Thunder, on Nov. 8 and traveled with Houston to its next game in San Antonio. He revealed to Smith that he planned to meet with Morey to discuss ways he could help the team. He said Morey came to him in San Antonio and told him that he would not suit up for the game against the Spurs and would be released.

“I didn’t like how that went down,” Anthony said of his release.

The 10-time All-Star remains a free agent this summer, and The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported earlier this week that the Knicks considered bringing Anthony back if the franchise had acquired other top free agents this offseason. If New York signed free agents like Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, Anthony, who played for seven seasons with the Knicks, could have been added to a roster built around veteran talent. Instead, Durant and Irving went to the crosstown Nets and Anthony is still looking for a landing spot. Blazers star Damian Lillard took to Twitter earlier this week to lobby for Anthony to be signed by another team. 

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