Knicks Rumors: What Raymond Felton Pursuit Means for Jeremy Lin
The New York Knicks have received the Jeremy Lin offer sheet from the Houston Rockets, and while it seemed like a foregone conclusion owner James Dolan would match it only days ago, it turns out that the Knicks might have already found their point guard.
The Knicks have acquired Raymond Felton and Kurt Thomas from Portland for Jared Jeffries and Dan Gadzuric, sources tell the Daily News— Frank Isola (@FisolaNYDN) July 15, 2012
With the addition of Felton, and Jason Kidd already on the team, the Knicks have two point guards capable of carrying the load over the course of the season and certainly won't be needing a third.
That leaves the still-unsigned Lin on the outside looking in with an impressive offer awaiting him in Houston. If the Knicks decline to match the offer, Linsanity will be taking its talents down South.
So how did the unthinkable happen?
Lin's hardcore fans can thank the Rockets for that. Houston originally had an offer on the table that would pay Lin around $5 million the first two years of the deal followed by a substantial increase to around $9 million in year three, per Frank Isola of the New York Daily News.
However, per the same report, the Rockets decided to change that offer. Instead, Houston made an attempt to scare the Knicks away by raising its third-year figures for Lin's contract to around $14 million and change.
That would have left New York paying a large sum of money to just a handful of players and forced the franchise to succumb to the league's new collective bargaining agreement. The new CBA imposes a stiff luxury tax on big-spending teams.
But the Knicks had no desire to follow suit. Rather than take a long-term and expensive risk on an unproven point guard, the team chose to go with Felton instead. He will prove to be a cheaper and certainly less-risky undertaking.
Just like that, Linsanity in New York could be over. As quickly as Lin swept in to take this town off its feet last February, he's being whisked away by the Rockets even faster.
Linsanity will move on and survive such a drastic change, but it will no longer continue to grow in New York and, more specifically, at Madison Square Garden. The time might have been short, but there's no doubt both sides greatly benefited from this mutual relationship.
Despite that, Lin will always be left with the feelings of severed ties with the only NBA organization that would give him a chance. There will be nothing left to do but to prove the Knicks made a mistake in letting him go.
Lin has proven people wrong before. The Knicks could be the next team added to that list.
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