Chauncey Billups: ‘Scoring 30 meant too much to ‘Melo’

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Carmelo Anthony remains an unsigned free agent.

In theory there are plenty of teams that could use him as a bench scorer, but if Anthony could accept that role he’d still be a Rocket. So he is working out at his gym while his agent trying to hustle up the right gig for him next season.

Chauncey Billups, a teammate of Anthony’s in Denver and New York, was on SiriusXM NBA Radio in Las Vegas at the Summer League and gave an honest assessment of Anthony’s career and why he isn’t on a team now.

“I’ll tell you what, it’s so crazy – I feel bad for [Anthony], and here’s why. ‘Melo was like a good teammate, man. ‘Melo practiced every day. He didn’t miss any games. Now the only thing I will say – and I’ve even told ‘Melo this – scoring 30 meant too much to ‘Melo. It meant too much because he could have games where he had 20, 22 [points], we win the game and he’s mad. He might have 36 and he’s in there, you know, we lose the game and he’s in there picking everybody up. Scoring 30 meant too much, but I think now you look, fast forward the tape, and the reason why he’s not in the league because he’s still worthy, is he hasn’t mentally taken that step back to say, ‘OK, I’ll come in and play against back-ups. I’ll try to help the team out. I know I might not be able to close, but I just want to help.’ Well, he’s not there yet.”

Billups, who has interviewed to be a GM in the league, sounded a lot like an NBA front office guy with that quote because ask teams about bringing in ‘Melo and the answer is some variation of that same sentiment. His game is that of a scoring bench player at this point in his career, but that’s not his mentality. It’s not a role he will accept.

If he doesn’t, he will spend another season watching NBA games on League Pass like the rest of us.