Carmelo Anthony has been activated by the Portland Trail Blazers and will start at power forward in Tuesday night’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans and could be in the starting lineup for the foreseeable future, according to coach Terry Stotts.
When asked if Anthony was going to start as the team’s starting power forward after Tuesday’s game, Stotts said, “I don’t see why not.”
Anthony is expected to play 20 minutes, a source told ESPN’s Marc Spears.
“This, from our standpoint, is a good fit for us,” Stotts said pregame. “He fills a need, but for him… obviously he’s been out of the league for a while and I’m sure he’s glad to be back in.”
Anthony, who has not played since Nov. 8, 2018, will start alongside Hassan Whiteside, Rodney Hood, CJ McCollum and Anfernee Simons with Damian Lillard out with a back injury. It’s Anthony’s first start since Oct. 30, 2018 when he was with the Rockets. That night, Houston played Anthony’s new team, the Portland Trail Blazers.
Stotts said Anthony “looked good at the gym this morning” during Portland’s shootaround on Tuesday morning. However, Stotts added that getting back in NBA shape will be the biggest transition for Anthony, who hasn’t played in an NBA game in 376 days.
Anthony, 35, will wear jersey No. 00. The 10-time All-Star has not played since Nov. 8, 2018, with the Houston Rockets.
“Carmelo is an established star in this league that will provide a respected presence in our locker room and a skill set at a position of need on the floor,” Blazers president Neil Olshey said.
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SOURCE: ESPN, Andrew Lopez