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Carmelo Anthony to Own Team in Aussie Basketball League

Carmelo Anthony can add team owner to his decorated basketball resume.

Anthony has announced a partnership with Australia’s National Basketball League that includes him joining the ownership group of a future expansion team. The 10-time NBA All-Star will also serve as global ambassador of the NBL’s Next Stars program.

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The financial terms of the deal were not released. It’s unclear what expansion team he will own, but the NBL has considered adding a franchise in southeast Asia as well as growing domestically either on the Gold Coast or Sydney, where a franchise would compete with the Sydney Kings.

Anthony, who turned 40 last week, has been busy lately as the former NBA star has turned into an entrepreneur. The former NBA scoring champ teamed up with Isos7 last year to launch a private equity firm (Isos7 Growth Equity) and recently launched a cannabis-focused agency (Grand National), among other business ventures.

Anthony’s schedule just got busier, as he will now promote the top men’s Aussie basketball league, which has become a nontraditional route for top prospects looking to reach the NBA. Anthony, who retired after 19 seasons last year, joins other former and current NBA players who have invested in NBL teams. The long list includes Khris Middleton, John Wall, Kevin Martin, Shawn Marion, Andrew Bogut, Al Harrington and Zach Randolph.

The news comes two months after two-time NBA champ Kenny Smith was named the head of the Next Stars Players Initiatives in North America. The Next Stars program has stood out as the go-to platform for the league’s most sought-after and draft-eligible talent. The one-year player development initiative, one of the international pathways to the NBA, has produced stars like Charlotte Hornets guard and 2021 Rookie of the Year LaMelo Ball.

Oklahoma City guard Josh Giddey, a Melbourne native, and OKC forward Ousmane Dieng are among the eight Next Star players who’ve been drafted in the first round since 2018.

The Next Stars program will be represented again this month with French star Alex Sarr projected to go No. 1 overall in the NBA draft. The former Perth Wildcats’ big man headlines the 2024 Next Stars class, the largest in league history. The NBL is owned by president Larry Kestelman.

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