Carmelo Anthony wants to be free agent

Carmelo Anthony celebrates after drawing a foul in Carmelo Anthony celebrates after drawing a foul in the fourth quarter of a game against the Philadelphia 76ers. (Feb. 24, 2013) Photo Credit: Jim McIsaac

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Carmelo Anthony is intrigued by the prospect of testing free agency next summer, the Knicks star said in a recent interview with the New York Observer.

"I want to be a free agent," Anthony said. "I think everybody in the NBA dreams to be a free agent at least one time in their career. It's like you have an evaluation period, you know. It's like if I'm in the gym and I have all the coaches, all the owners, all the GMs come into the gym and just evaluate everything I do. So yes, I want that experience."

Anthony is expected to exercise the opt out in his contract after the season.

The Knicks could start negotiating with Anthony on an extension in February, but it makes financial sense for him to wait until he's a free agent to re-sign.

Under the terms of the collective bargaining agreement, the Knicks could offer Anthony a five-year deal worth about $129 million while other teams could only sign him only to a four-year contract.

Anthony also said in the Observer story that he "came to New York for a reason. I've been with you all my life, almost to a fault. I wanted to come here and take on the pressures of playing in New York."

Anthony said on the first day of training camp three weeks ago that he doesn't intend to discuss his contract status during the season. This Observer interview took place in September and the story was posted online Tuesday night.

The Dolan family owns controlling interest in the Knicks, Madison Square Garden and Cablevision. Cablevision owns Newsday.

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