The Houston Rockets have been the busiest team this NBA offseason, as they have tried everything to create a little buzz for the upcoming season. They were big wheelers and dealers on draft day and have been linked to any number of possible big trades and moves that would change the landscape of the league. Heck, they even went after their own slice of 'Linsanity' when they offered New York Knicks guard Jeremy Lin a qualifying offer of $28.8 million, a hefty price for a player with only three good months on their NBA resume.
Unfortunately, no big move has happened for the Rockets and now they can strike Lin off their potential backcourt, as it's now being reported that the Knicks are going to match Houston's offer.
With Lin heading back to New York and with the Knicks signing of aged point guard Jason Kidd, there have been some question marks on what Lin's role will be with the team in the upcoming season. Mike Woodson, head coach of the team, cleared that up quickly.
"… Jeremy was our starter before he got hurt. Unfortunately he went down with an injury. He's not going to be punished for that," Woodson told Marc Berman of the New York Post early Thursday.
"He's got work to do this summer. But when he comes back to veterans camp, he'll have the first nod. He'll be our starter and Jason will back him up in terms of helping developing this young man into a great point guard."
Woodson is known as an old school type coach who prefers veterans over young guys so who knows exactly how long of a rope Lin will get once training camp begins. In fact, star teammate Carmelo Anthony believes that Lin would best be served coming off the bench behind Kidd for a while, learning off the 39-year-old pro.
“This will be one of the best opportunities that Jeremy will ever have, from a standpoint of playing under Kidd,’’ Anthony said before the U.S. Olympic team’s practice as it gears up for Thursday night’s exhibition game versus the Dominican Republic. “If [Lin] comes off the bench, playing behind a guy like Jason Kidd, playing under a guy and learning from Jason Kidd, he should take advantage of this opportunity — just having JKidd on our team.’’
Whatever the starter situation may be once the season opens up, one thing is for certain; the Knicks just secured a good portion of their positive media attention with keeping Lin and secured their shaky backcourt with the addition of the wily pro Kidd.
That's a win-win in any book.
James LeBeau is a sports contributor for CraveOnline Sports and you can follow him on Twitter @JleBeau76 or subscribe on Facebook.com/CraveOnlineSports.
Photo Credit: AP