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Jeremy Lin Saga: Did The Rockets Simply Do The Knicks A Favor?

You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours; a column by Marc Berman from the New York Post suggests that's all the Jeremy Lin signing was about. It wasn't a secret that the Knicks wanted re-sign Lin, but I initially thought the Rockets had a sincere interest in making Lin their starting point guard and in their mind, correcting the mistake they made last season. Restricted free-agents sign offer sheets with teams they have no intention of actually playing for all the time, but to have the other team in on the deal is a new one to me. What I mean by that, some restricted free-agents have non-official agreements from their current team to go out and find out what their market value is by signing an offer sheet with another team, and then their team will match. Scenarios like that happen all the time and I believe happened last year when Marc Gasol signed an offer sheet with the Rockets, but what I haven't heard of is the other team being a willing facilitator of that deal.

When I first read this assertion I dismissed it, but after thinking about it for a few minutes; the pieces fit.

Morey’s actions give pause. The Knicks declined to make Lin an offer until he set the market, so he had to find a team willing to give him an offer sheet. Lin was in a tricky position because the Knicks had attempted to scare away suitors by boldly stating before free agency they wanted him back.

Morey could have intentionally done a favor for the Knicks in setting a reasonable market price and not having Lin twist in the wind for weeks. The Knicks may have repaid the favor when the Knicks gave Morey a slew of assets in the Camby deal — center prospects Josh Harrellson and Jerome Jordan, Toney Douglas, two second-round picks and $2 million.

The price the Knicks paid in the Marcus Camby sign-and-trade with Houston seemed like it was way over value, not to mention unnecessary; now we know why. Kudos to the Rockets and Daryl Morey for gaining some assets for basically nothing. Camby was going to leave regardless, and it appears Jeremy Lin didn't have a strong desire to play here, but playing along and helping out the Knicks gained them a good reserve guard and multiple picks for nothing. Not a move that will change the fortunes of the team, but a quality move nonetheless.

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