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Carmelo Anthony Might Not Be Back With The Thunder In 2018-19

carmelo anthony at a thunder press conference

Carmelo Anthony made his free agency decision regarding his future with the Oklahoma City Thunder earlier in June, deciding to opt into the final year of his contract. This was not a surprising decision considering the final year of his contract is worth $28 million. No one was going to pay Anthony anything close to that on the open market.

The Oklahoma City Thunder might not be bringing Anthony back despite this, though. There appears to be a growing chance that Anthony will be on his way out.

With Paul George signing a four-year max deal with the Thunder, the franchise's tax pill is set to be very, very high.

Anthony, 34, appears to be a prime stretch or opt out candidate.

"Some players around the NBA believe the Thunder will stretch or buyout Carmelo Anthony. If OKC doesn't move on from Melo, they'll owe the largest tax bill in NBA history, per Bobby Marks. Due to repeater tax, they'd owe $130 million (with just 11 players under contract so far)," Alex Kennedy tweeted.

George and Russell Westbrook were seen celebrating together late on Saturday night. Anthony was nowhere to be found. "The fact that Melo is a big Nas fan & wasn't on stage puffing cigars with Paul & Russ in OKC kind of removes the mystery about his future with the Thunder. OKC saves a fortune by cutting ties with him. Makes a ton of sense - for both sides - to move on," tweeted Michael Lee.

We've had situations like this play out before. Dwyane Wade opted into the final year of his contract with the Chicago Bulls last season. Then, the team bought him out and he joined LeBron James on the Cavs.

Will something similar happen with Carmelo this summer? It wouldn't be surprising if it did.

The Carmelo Anthony-Thunder situation is definitely one to watch moving forward.