The Houston Rockets have officially signed restricted free-agent Jeremy Lin to an offer sheet.
The deal has changed from the verbal agreement that was initially reported. The first two years of the offer still stand at $5 million in year one, and $5.25 million in year two. The third year the agreement has been altered. Initially the Rockets had agreed to pay Lin $9 million in that season with a club option for the fourth year. Now the club option has been eliminated and the third year of the pact has risen to $14.8 million.
It’s starting to seem as though Rockets general manager Darly Morey is losing his mind, and it has nothing to do with this absurd offer to Lin.
I understand that Morey thinks he needs a superstar to build around in Houston, but taking back a bunch of bad contracts and trading away all your draft picks just to get Dwight Howard seems like potential suicide. The Rockets are reported to be sending the Magic all three first round picks from this year, in addition to taking on the contracts of Duhon, Richardson and Big Baby Davis. It’s also rumored that the Rockets will send the lottery protected first round pick they received from the Raptors for Kyle Lowry. All of this, for a chance to potentially build around Dwight Howard. Howard is a free-agent at the end of next season, and he has claimed he will not sign an extension with anyone but Brooklyn should he be dealt this year.
Not only are the Rockets taking a huge gamble to land Howard, their moves have left them in dire need of a starting point guard. Morey offered Lin a staggering third-year salary in an attempt to stave off the Knicks. It’s a move that will further limit the Knicks financial flexibility, but it is also a move that screams of desperation for Houston. Should Morey strike out on getting this Howard deal done, this entire off-season will be a failure. He’ll be without Lowry and will have amnestied Scola for what?
If the Rockets do succeed in acquiring Howard, they will have 1 season to sell him on Houston, who will be surrounded by a cast of Orlando Magic rejects.
By the way, the Knicks are still expected to match the offer sheet despite the third year increase. New York is expected to wait the full three days they are allotted before matching Houston’s offer.
It looks like Morey will strike out when it comes to Lin, but only time will tell if he wins or loses in his all-in push to land Dwight Howard.