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Why the Washington Wizards Should Sign Carmelo Anthony in 2014

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COMMENTARY | With the New York Knicks' Carmelo Anthony announcing his plans to test free agency in the summer of 2014, could the Washington Wizards emerge as a favorite to sign the superstar?

Here's why the Wizards should go after Melo when he becomes a free agent next year:

The Wizards would have their own 'Big Three'

Youngsters John Wall and Bradley Beal are emerging stars in the NBA and by adding a young veteran such as Melo to the mix, the Washington Wizards would be the very proud owners of their very own Big Three.

Anthony would provide the Wizards with some veteran star power and a player capable of scoring close to 30 points per night. With Wall's ability to create scoring opportunities for his teammates as a result of his blazing quickness, Melo would be able to score at will against the opposition as a Wizard.

With an explosive trio consisting of Anthony, Wall and Beal, the Wizards would instantly become one of the favorites in the Eastern Conference.

The Wizards could play small ball

Small ball reigns supreme in today's NBA. With the two-time champion Miami Heat leading the way, teams are focused upon having the five most talented players on the court instead of worrying about what positions they're going to play.

Chris Bosh and LeBron James aren't traditionally players who'd start at center and power forward, respectively. However, small ball allows two of Miami's biggest stars to take advantage of their athletic abilities and provide matchup nightmares to the opposition at those spots.

With Otto Porter slated to be the Wizards' small forward of the future, one could question the wisdom surrounding the potential acquisition of Melo next summer. However, by deciding to play small ball, Porter and Anthony could play together in the same front court.

Nene, Melo and Porter would make up the Wizards' front court, with the young dazzling duo of Wall and Beal in the backcourt. With that starting five, the Wizards would have a plethora of scoring options in their offensive attack.

Small ball should actually be a familiar concept to Carmelo Anthony.

In New York, due to Amar'e Stoudemire's chronically injured knee, Anthony has logged several minutes at the power forward position with a high level of success. He's a matchup nightmare for opposing fours to guard, with his lethal combination of size, quickness and shooting ability.

Manning the power forward position in Washington, Anthony could be just as deadly playing small ball in a Wizards' uniform.

The Wizards could have the cap room to sign Anthony

The money that currently counts against the salary cap occupied by Trevor Ariza and Emeka Okafor could simply be used to bring Anthony to Washington in 2014.

Ariza and Okafor combined cap dollars of approximately $22 million will come off the books next summer. That could easily be enough to lure Anthony to Washington. By becoming a free agent, Melo's already taking a discount because only New York can offer him a max five-year deal for $129 million.

So Washington's potential offer could be in the neighborhood of what teams other than the Knicks can bring to the negotiating table.

Losing Ariza wouldn't hurt considering the team's depth at the wing position with players such as Porter, key reserve Martell Webster and young preseason sensation Glen Rice Jr. already in the fold. Okafor would be a bigger loss but if the Wizards sign Anthony, they'd just slide Nene over to the center position to maximize the team's small-ball potential.

Therefore, on paper, Anthony and the Wizards seem like a perfect match. Hopefully, next summer, there's a chance this interesting hypothetical scenario becomes a reality.

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Drexel Perry's a freelance writer who covers the Washington Redskins and the Washington Wizards on the Yahoo Contributor Network. For additional sports talk, follow him on Twitter @DrexelPerry.

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