It’s not official until the deadline passes to match the offer from the Houston Rockets, but all the moves the New York Knicks are making indicate that Jeremy Lin will be playing somewhere else next season, proving to be too costly from a certain point in the next few seasons.
The Rockets offered Lin $25 million for three years of service with a back loaded third season – Just over $5 million in the first couple of seasons and a whopping $14.8 million in the third. If the Knicks were to match this offer, that would put them owing $75 million to four players in the 2014-2015, thanks to the contracts of Amare Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler. With the luxury tax, Lin’s cost to the team at that point will be over $30 million.
Until the last couple of days, everything coming out of the Knicks’ clubhouse was pointing towards Lin returning to the team, some sources even saying that the Knicks would match anything up to $1 billion. When Jason Kidd signed on the team for three years and $9 million, he said that part of his desire to sign in New York was a chance to be some kind of tutor for Lin. Now it seems that Raymod Felton, who had a very good season with the Knicks in 2010-2011 before getting traded to Denver, will be returning as the first point guard.
Felton averaged 11.4 points and 6.5 assists for the Portland Trail Blazers last season and will probably be headed to New York via a sign-and-trade deal, although what the Knicks will send to the Northwest is still unknown. But it seems that the Felton trade has been another one of the moves by the Knicks that have upset Lin and made him hope that the offer won’t be matched.
Lin was initially disappointed about the Knicks stalling regarding matching the offer sheet by the Rockets, but there’s nothing he can do about it, or the Knicks as well. The NBA is business, and resigning Lin might be the right think from a professional standpoint, but seems like a terrible one financially. Maybe the Knicks will regret giving Chandler and Stoudemire huge contracts which cost them one of the most marketable stars in the NBA, but at the moment, it just seems like the logical thing to do.