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Report: Lakers pause deal talks with Anthony

From NBA media reports

Former All-Star Carmelo Anthony will have to wait to join up with LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Lakers have paused talks on a possible contract agreement with the Anthony unless the team makes a turn toward the playoffs. After Saturday’s loss to the Phoenix Suns (as well as other games since then), the Lakers are No. 10 in the Western Conference. They are 4 1/2 games behind the No. 8-seeded San Antonio Spurs and have one of the most difficult schedules remaining in the West.

Here’s more from Wojnarowski on the Anthony-Lakers talks:

The Lakers had been leaning toward signing Anthony for the rest of the season — until losses in four of the past five games left the organization and Anthony’s camp wondering if it made sense to bring the veteran into an unsettled environment with suddenly so little chance of making the playoffs, league sources said.

The Lakers also have considered signing a center to bolster its frontcourt, league sources said. The Lakers are one roster spot below the league’s maximum of 15.

Via Twitter, Wojnarowski also adds: “Bringing ‘Melo into team that may not have meaningful games left makes little sense for the organization or him. Lakers had waited to see who could be available for them in buyout market. For now, makes more sense for Lakers to use minutes on young players than a 34-year-old FA.”

Anthony was waived by the Chicago Bulls on Feb. 1, nine days after he was traded there by the Houston Rockets.

The Bulls had no plans to play Anthony had been looking to either trade the 10-time All-Star before the Feb. 7 deadline or ultimately waive him and make him a free agent.

Anthony averaged 13.4 points in 10 games with the Rockets. He has not played since Nov. 8. Anthony was traded by Oklahoma City to Atlanta in July, a move that preceded the Hawks releasing him to sign with the Rockets. The Bulls, technically, were Anthony’s fourth franchise in seven months.

Anthony was the No. 3 pick in the star-studded 2003 draft class that also included James (the No. 1 pick), Chris Bosh (the No. 4 pick) and Dwyane Wade (the No. 5 pick). Anthony has averaged 24.0 points and 6.5 rebounds per game in his career.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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