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Knicks Land Jason Kidd

by Photo of Rob Rubinstein

In a surprise move, the Knicks snag veteran Kidd.

Knicks Land Jason Kidd

The Mavericks were on the brink of coming to an agreement on a 3-year $9 million deal with 39 year old, Jason Kidd. However, yesterday, the veteran point guard decided to take his talents to New York and play for the Knicks. The deal the Mavs offered Kidd was the same deal agreed upon between New York and Kidd, 3 years $9 million. It was thought that Kidd wanted to go wherever Deron Williams went, however, that ended up not being the case. With Brooklyn out of the picture, Kidd, in a surprise move opted to play for the Knicks over the Mavs.

How the Knicks acquire Kidd is a pretty important note, and it still hasn't been decided yet, as Howard Beck notes. If they use the full MLE, that prevents the Knicks from using that on another player. If they execute a sign-and-trade, they have to give up some of their depth (a combination of Toney Douglas, Jerome Jordan, or Josh Harrelson). Either move has it's drawbacks, but a sign-and-trade seems easier to swallow for New York and can allow them to bring on another free agent using the MLE.

The next order of business for the Knicks now is to match the Rockets 3-year offer sheet, with a 4th-year team option given to the 2nd year sensation, Jeremy Lin. The deal the Rockets offered Lin was in the ballpark of around $30+ million dollars for the potential 4 years. If New York wants Lin back, which many reports indicate that they do then they must be prepared to pay a back loaded contract to retain the 23-year-old point guard. This means that the Knicks will be paying Lin $10.2 million over his 1st two years and then $9.3 million over in the final year of his contract, with the team option for a 4th season. This move will ultimately put New York over $75 million in salary cap, which as a result will force them to pay the new luxury tax that was put into place in the newly constructed CBA.

The goal for the Knicks moving into this upcoming season is to make sure they sign Jeremy Lin to presumably start ahead of Jason Kidd as well as retaining shooting guard JR Smith and 3-point specialist Steve Novak. Teams are permitted to exceed the salary cap to retain their own players, therefore, New York will be able to bring back all three players, Lin, Smith, and Novak. The vision of the Knicks with Jason Kidd on the team now is for him to mentor Jeremy Lin and show him the little nuances and knowledge to being an effective NBA point guard down the road. Plus, as Kelly Dwyer says, Kidd is still an excellent mind on the court as well as a great post entry passer. Carmelo Anthony will love that next season. The risk is paying a player clearly on the way out until he's 42. But Kidd is a better floor general than any of New York's options even at this age (with the possible exception of Lin) so his addition is still an upgrade.

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