After 19 NBA seasons, former number three overall pick Carmelo Anthony officially called it a career on May 22 via a video on social media.
“Now the time has come for me to say goodbye … to the game that gave me purpose and pride,” he said in his farewell message.
Anthony, who last played with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2020-21, ends his career as a 10-time NBA All-Star, NBA Scoring Champion, Six times All- NBA (twice First Team), and ninth on the NBA’s All-Time Scorers list.
Following Anthony’s announcement, Phoenix Suns’ star Kevin Durant chimed in with his thoughts. Durant and Anthony have been rivals on the court and teammates during their time with the USA Men’s Olympic Basketball Team. Durant poked fun at Anthony, taking his followers on a trip down memory lane by showing how much Anthony would foul him during their matchups over the years (H/T @ClutchPoints).
Carmelo Anthony Reflects on Basketball Career
Anthony is not as decorated as the other top picks in his 2003 draft class, such as LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh, but he still will go down as one of the best players to ever touch an NBA court. He finishes his career as a top 10 scorer, an Olympic gold medalist, and as the catalyst that ushered in one of the most exciting eras in New York Knicks’ history.
He may not be on anyone’s Mount Rushmore of NBA players, but Carmelo will most likely be a first-ballot Hall of Famer and one of the most respected players around the league. More importantly, he did things HIS way.
“I remember the days when I had nothing, just a ball on the court and a dream of something more,” Anthony said.
“But basketball was my outlet. My purpose was strong, my communities, the cities I represented with pride, and the fans that supported me along the way. I am forever grateful for those people and places because they made me Carmelo Anthony.”
Carmelo Anthony Passes the Torch After Retiring
Some may label Anthony’s career as subpar because he never won an MVP award or NBA title despite playing with a plethora of talented players over the last 19 seasons. And in the minds of some people, that would count as a stain on his legacy. But in his farewell message, Anthony made sure to note that his legacy has nothing to do with what he accomplished on the court.
The next chapter of Carmelo’s life involves basketball, but he is no longer the star. That role now belongs to his son Kiyan Anthony, who currently attends Christ the King Memorial High School in New York City and is one of the top-rated shooting guards in the country. Anthony is excited to pass the torch to his son.
“People ask what I believe my legacy is,” Anthony added. “It’s not my feats on the court that come to mind, all the awards or praise. Because my story has always been more than basketball. My legacy, my son … I will forever continue through you. The time has come for you to carry this torch.”
It will be interested to see how Anthony thrives in the next stages of his career.