ESPN.com–New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony is bringing professional soccer to Puerto Rico.
Anthony is the new owner of Puerto Rico FC, a club that will begin play in the North American Soccer League in 2016, it was announced on Thursday.
“I’m a huge fan of the game,” the eight-time All Star said in a phone interview with ESPN.com. “The sport is growing at a rapid pace, and I wanted to bring it down here to the island.”
Anthony said he’s been in discussions to bring a team to Puerto Rico for several years. Originally, he talked to the ownership of the Puerto Rican Islanders, who played in the NASL from 2011-12, about revitalizing the club.
Those discussions eventually led Anthony to seek ownership of Puerto Rico FC. The club will play its home games at Juan Ramon Loubriel Stadium, a 12,500-seat venue outside of San Juan. It is NASL’s 13th team.
“I knew that this would be something that would kind of bring my fellow Puerto Ricans all together,” said Anthony, whose late father was Puerto Rican. “This is something they can call their own, something that they represent.”
This is such a Carmelo Anthony move it hurts. All of his buddies, Lebron, JR, Shump, they’re all playing in the finals, and he’s out buying soccer teams in Puerto Rico. I mean good for him I guess. It must be nice to take all of James Dolan’s money and more than likely run a soccer team into the ground.
But seriously, how do you think Carmelo feels right now? He just played half of the season with the second worst team in basketball, and all of the guys they traded away are up 2-1 in the finals. Do you think if he could he would’ve taken a discount to Chicago now? Yea, I think he would too. Re-signing with the Knicks will go down as the worst move of his career. He should fire or rid himself of anybody that told him to take the extra money with the Knicks. Instead of maybe competing for an NBA title this season, he’s going to be playing out his days in obscurity for Knicks teams that won’t ever make the playoffs….
…But at least he has a soccer team now.