The real reason La La is divorcing Carmelo Anthony

As of this writing, La La and Carmelo Anthony have been together for almost 16 years. The couple met in 2003, became engaged on Christmas Day 2004, and welcomed son Kiyan in 2007 before finally tying the knot in summer 2010, even featuring the wedding on a VH1 reality special, La La's Full Court Wedding. Despite seeming like one of the most rock-solid celebrity couples ever, the pair separated in April 2017. They appeared to reconcile within months, and then later in late December 2018 into early January 2019, but it didn't last.

In July 2019, La La told People in a statement that she and Carmelo were no more. "As La La and Carmelo have been living apart for quite some time, La La is proceeding with legal discussions as the next step in their relationship," La La's rep said. "They will remain loving and committed parents to their son."

No details were provided for the reasoning behind their separation, or what exactly those aforementioned "legal discussions" are specifically about, but there's more than enough background on the Anthonys to help figure this mystery out.

Carmelo Anthony was accused of cheating on La La more than once

A source told Page Six that Carmelo Anthony has been unfaithful to La La Anthony more than once. "Melo's tagline was 'She's married, I'm not.' That's how he would justify [cheating]. His attitude is that all professional athletes do it, and many of them do. La La has put up with a lot. She knew it was going on, but I guess this time she's had enough." Another insider told E! News, "He has been messing with strippers for a long time now."

Still, one source insisted, "There are many players in the league who have these [extra] significant others but that doesn't seem to be the case with Melo."

In summer 2019, cheating rumors resurfaced when photos of Carmelo with a "mystery woman" on a yacht were published. Page Six revealed the bikini-clad beauty to be Sara Smiri (though a source said that's not her real last name). Smiri is reportedly married to an "extremely private" man, something with which Carmelo concurred in a video posted to TMZ Sports — and he even claimed that her husband was on the yacht with them, just not in any photos. Regardless of however innocent the interaction may have been, an insider told Page Six that La La was "a wreck" over the pictures and still has issues trusting Carmelo.

Does Carmelo Anthony have a love child?

In April 2017 TMZ Sports reported that Carmelo Anthony may have impregnated another woman while still married to La La Anthony — legally, at least. Sources told the site that a stripper at a New York City gentlemen's club said that she was almost seven months along with Carmelo's child, and the then-unnamed dancer reportedly expected him to pay for her medical costs, as well as for child support for the baby once it was born. Still, insiders insisted to the site that the pregnancy wasn't the catalyst for the breakup … at least not the only one.

A source told E! News at the time "They are done. He got this woman pregnant. La La was really upset. She knew he was messing around and they had a moment where they were going to call it quits, but Carmelo wanted to save it … Carmelo did not tell La La. She found out on her own, and at that point it was too late and Carmelo could not dig himself out of it. She still doesn't know the whole truth."

However, another source vehemently denied the pregnancy rumors to The New York Daily News, saying, "That rumor is absolutely not true. The baby thing is not true." An insider close to Carmelo also told Page Six, "The stripper pregnancy rumor is not true. Yes he's not been perfect, but the baby with a stripper isn't true."

La La and Carmelo Anthony were hot and cold for a long time

A tale as old as time: La La and Carmelo Anthony may have simply, like a lot of other couples who've been together for so long, grown apart. A source close to the couple told the New York Daily News in April 2017 that the pair had been hot and cold for a long time. "They have been fighting for about a year," the insider said. "The marriage has always been a rocky one, so this is no surprise."

Other reports concurred. "They're done," an insider told E! News in the same month. "They've had some major issues lately." La La herself wrote in her book, The Love Playbook (via the New York Post) that she and Carmelo had "difficulties in [their] relationship in 2012," though she didn't specify what those difficulties were.

La La's own rep echoed those sentiments in her statement confirming that La La and Carmelo had been "living apart for quite some time."

Carmelo's career cooled off as La La headed for the door

While La La is achieving success with acting, most recently in Starz series Power, a source told Page Six in April 2017 that Carmelo's NBA career (then with the New York Knicks) wasn't doing well at all. "Carmelo's career problems, on the other hand, don't put him in a good mental place," a source said, adding, "There's also the uncertainty about their future — Carmelo is likely to be leaving New York but who knows for where."

According to NBA.com, that "where" was Atlanta by way of Oklahoma City in July of 2018, before he finally landed in Houston, finishing out a dismal season with only 10 lackluster appearances for the Rockets. Following his brief stint down south, Carmelo was again traded to Chicago to play for the Bulls. 

It's likely, however, that Carmelo's career woes didn't weigh too heavily on La La, since the pair reportedly separated while he remained on the Knicks roster. Still, that didn't stop another source from throwing some shade on behalf of La La, telling Page Six that Carmelo's potential relocation to a new city played a big role in La La wanting to walk. "Why would she want to be traipsing around to a city like Cleveland so he can go win a ring?" the source asked. 

Possible divorce aside, La La Anthony is thriving

While Carmelo Anthony's NBA career may have taken a downturn, La La's stock is soaring. The former VJ was cast on the Beverly Hills, 90210 reboot as David Silver's (Brian Austin Green) wife. The good news dovetails the end of Power, on which she starred as Lakeisha Grant for five years. She told People of the roller coaster in her personal and professional lives, "You can look at the glass half-empty or you can look at the glass half-full, you know? When you're in this world, you don't get to pick and choose what you go through. I just push through and stay positive and always remind myself that it could be worse. Like, I'm living my dream and I'm really happy where I'm at in life right now." And even if she wasn't working, La La still makes bank: Page Six reported that she recently won $68,000 from a slot machine in New Orleans.

A source told Page Six that the pair "ultimately lost their spark" after Carmelo was traded to the New York Knicks in 2011. The source said, "At the very beginning, he was so smitten and in love with her. She was on TV and he was so young. Their relationship was legit." However, the insider claimed, later "it became more about their business arrangement … He signed with [publicists], so they would take her on their roster too, all for the purpose of advancing her career."

The press wore La La and Carmelo Anthony down

After both Carmelo and La La were photographed separately without their wedding rings after the April 2017 split news, a source told Page Six that the media attention is taxing on the TV personality. "La La doesn't want to deal with all of these rumors … she doesn't want to focus on any of it at the moment … She'll deal with it when it all comes down."

Depending on who you ask, back in 2017, there was still a chance of a reconciliation. A source told Page Six, "They've been living separately for several months. They've broken up in the past, they split three years ago, gave it some time and then got back together. They're hoping the same works again." An insider also told the Daily News, "This is just a separation. Nothing has been filed. As far as I've seen, it's absolutely civil. And there is also a child involved, so it's 100 percent civil." However, the likelihood of their reunion sticking the landing really depends on who you ask: An insider told E! News, "At this point, La La is not willing to save their relationship."

Has Carmelo Anthony had an ongoing side piece?

Carmelo did, in fact, get another woman pregnant, but this one wasn't a stripper — it was a normal girl from Chicago named Mia Angel Burks, if one report is to be believed. Anthony Jacobs, a former friend of the 24-year-old Northwestern University grad, told WCGI-FM's Morning Takeover (via the Daily News) that Burks was a side dish for Carmelo for months during his marriage. "Mia met Carmelo at Room Seven, a club in Chicago when he was here for the NBA draft doing press," Jacobs said. "She's not a stripper … she doesn't know how to get money from guys … she works in education setting up programs … I've known that [they've been hooking up] for some months now."

Jacobs added that Burks wasn't out to get pregnant or ruin his marriage to La La, but that it just happened that way. "Carmelo wasn't taking her serious [sic] to the point where she started to buy her own plane tickets to go see him … She was more giddy about [the pregnancy and relationship] than anything. When those type of girls talk to those kind of guys, I don't think that's the premise in the back of their head, 'I'm gonna go destroy this happy home.' It's fun. It's perks."

They've managed to amicably co-parent

Sources told TMZ Sports in April 2017 that while La La and Carmelo have clear issues with one another, she insists he's actually a terrific father. At the time, the pair planned to share custody of Kiyan, with primary temporary custody going to La La. Carmelo would have visitation with Kiyan "a few times a week." The estranged couple was said to be determined to create structure for Kiyan while they work out a permanent arrangement, which insiders said they'd likely work on with their lawyers outside of court. La La herself said just after the initial split news in 2017 that everything seemed "normal" for Kiyan, noting that it was her priority that Kiyan be "healthy and happy." As of this writing, there has been no official update on the custody situation.

But perhaps La La's adoration of Kiyan was a hint that there was trouble in paradise, too: In April 2019, she gushed to Us Weekly that she and Carmelo wouldn't have a second child, explaining that Kiyan was her "best friend." "We're done," she said. "My son has fulfilled me in every single possible way, so I think I'm done, yes."