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NBA Free Agent Rumors: Washington Wizards Won't Use Amnesty Clause On Rashard Lewis, Agent Says

When the 2011 NBA free agency period began, many suspected the Washington Wizards would use the new Amnesty Clause to release Rashard Lewis and wipe away the $44 million he is owed over the next two seasons from their salary cap. However, it appears that will not be the case, according to Lewis' agent. Via Yahoo! Sports' Marc Spears:

Wizards won't be using amnesty clause on F Rashard Lewis, his agent Tony Dutt told Y! Sports. Lewis making $21.1 mil 11-12, $22.6 mill 12-13

Why would the Wizards not use the clause on Lewis? A week ago, SB Nation's Wizards blog Bullets Forever explained that releasing Lewis would put the Wizards too far under the new elevated salary floor:

This is a weak free agent class, and given where the Wizards are in the rebuilding stage, I strongly doubt they'll want to spend that much money this summer.  Instead, they'll keep Lewis, let him go next year and give themselves more money to spend in 2012, when there are a ton of marquee free agents available.  That would be the smart play, at least.

For more on the Wizards, visit Bullets Forever. For a full list of NBA free agents, visit SBNation.com.