Although the main reason behind not re-signing Jeremy Lin, letting him leave as a restricted free agent to the Houston Rockets, looks like a financial, salary-cap kind of reason, there are those that suggest that it’s just another example of how un-proffesionaly the New York Knicks are run by their owner, James Dolan.
Because even if Lin’s contract would have cost them quite a lot of money due to luxury tax and other big contracts they owe major players in the next few years, especially the 2014-2015 season, meaning Carmelo Anthony, Tyson Chandler and Amare Stoudemire, it seems that what the Knicks are worth without Lin and the money they’ve already lost in value is greater than the cost of possibly matching the Rockets’ offer.
Even deeper meanings than finances rise – The ego of James Dolan, who hasn’t been known to make the most astute basketball and financial decisions in the past. The Knicks aren’t the main source of income for Dolan and his family, and the team has remained profitable even with huge payrolls. But like is the case for many megalomaniac owners, Dolan wants to see his name, and his name only being credited when the Knicks do reach the title.
And that’s where the conflict occurs. The desire for glory and success sometimes crosses a path with the desire to gain all the superlatives and positive criticism. When the Knicks win because of big, planned signings like Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony, James Dolan looks good, and is happy. When out of nowhere comes a point guard from the edge of the bench and starts sending the city and parts of the nation into what is known as Linsanity, no one is going to give Dolan any credit.
Especially when that young point guard is winning games while Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire aren’t playing. The Knicks suddenly began winning because of their on-court chemistry, fused together by someone no one counted and believed in, certainly not Dolan.
Going back to everything that’s happened during the Isiah Thomas era with the Knicks, a person Dolan kept listening to and maybe still is, money reasons don’t make too much sense anymore. The Knicks overpaid on pretty much everyone during Thomas’ reign, making the team the most expensive laughing stock in the NBA. Donnie Walsh came in and started moving pieces that freed cap space that allowed getting Amare Stoudemire, leading the Knicks to playoff performances since his arrival, although it had less to do with him last season.
What does make sense is that Dolan wants people he put there to lead the team to success. Jeremy Lin wasn’t someone Dolan masterminded the signing and discovery of. He was just a forgotten player on the edge of the bench who got a chance and made the most of it, becoming a sensation, on the court and an even bigger one off of it. That’s not how James Dolan wants the New York Knicks to win.