It’s official that Jeremy Lin has accepted the Houston Rocket’s offer of $29 million over four years, as a restricted free agent, his current team, the New York Knicks, has the option to match that offer to retain the Taiwan-born phenom point guard.
The problem isn’t really the amount for the Knicks, as they know that Lin will come in at around the 6-7 million per year range this year, the problem is the way the Rockets structured the deal.
Rockets’ offer to Lin is heavily backloaded, meaning, he’ll be paid more at the tail-end of its contract. Lin is set to make $5 million in the first year, then 5.2M, then it jumps to $9.3 million in its last two years. With Amar’e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony both consuming over $23 million each in 2014-2015, add to that the meager contract of $2.7 million for Iman Shumpert, that means the Knicks will be hitting the salary cap limit with just 4 players.
The Rockets, on the other hand, only have to deal with $20 million in committed contracts during that same time frame, assuming their highest paid player, Luis Scola at $11 million, is still around.
It’ll be interesting to see what the Knicks decide. They haven’t been that smart or that cautious when it comes to spending, but with over 2 decades of futility, they’ve been testing the die hard Knicks fans’ patience for too long, especially when there’s a hot new Brooklyn team to root for next door.