New York, NY – Point guard Jeremy Lin will be allowed to leave the New York Knicks and head to the Houston Rockets. An insider says the team is going back on its promise to match any offer made to Lin after it secured the services of point guard Raymond Felton and NBA veteran Jason Kidd.
While two different sources claim the Knicks are still mulling over whether to pay Lin more than $25 million over three years they say it’s all but certain he’ll be released.
In order to match the offer the Knicks would be forced to pay a luxury tax in year three because of the $14.8 million tied to his contract offer with the Houston Rockets. That luxury tax would be a total out-of-pocket expense of $30 million in 2014-2015.
The Houston Rockets offer provides Jeremy Lin with $5 million during the first year, $5.225 million for his second and $14.8 million for the third year.
Having received the offer sheet on Saturday night the New York Knicks now have until 11:59 p.m. ET Tuesday to match the contract offer or release Lin to the Houston Rockets.
The reversal comes after Knicks coach Mike Woodson claimed for weeks that Lin was the future of the program and would therefore be secured for at least the next three years.
One big consideration would be that signing Jeremy Lin at this time would tie up $75 million in four players through the 2014-2015 season, specifically Lin, Anthony, Amare Stoudemire, and Tyson Chandler.
In any case the restricted free agent is set to make a good deal more money than he did last season as an undrafted player out of Harvard. Last season Lin earned $788,000 while pulling down 14.6 points, 6.2 assists and 3.1 rebounds per game. Lin played in 35 games but started in only 25 before tearing the cartilage in his knee.