Fans don't think Knicks ready to let go of Linsanity
By Ann Yu,The China Post
July 18, 2012, 12:06 am TWN
As the clock ticks for the New York Knicks to match Houston's offer for Jeremy Lin, fans from the Big Apple are pleading with the team to keep Linsanity within the city. More than 9,000 fans have signed the petition called "New York Knicks Management: Keep Jeremy Lin — Match the Houston Rockets' Offer" that was launched on Change.org.
The petition stated, "Jeremy Lin is the best thing that has happened to New York Knicks basketball in the last 20 years. Don't let Jeremy Lin go — match the Rockets' offer." As if that weren't enough, strippers of the famous Rick Cabaret gentlemen club also had something to say.
"Wake up!" said Rick's Cabaret Girl Anaya. "The fans want Lin to stay a Knick. Things were going so good when he was playing." Monica pleaded, "Jeremy Lin means so much to the Knicks and to the city. Don't let him go."
After coach Mike Woodson declared the team will "absolutely" match the Houston's four-year, US$28.8 million deal, the Rockets sweetened the official offer to a monstrous three-year, US$25 million deal. The team has remained silent in further comments after Houston dropped the bomb, including US$15 million for his third season with the team. Acquiring Raymond Felton seemed to kill all possibilities for Lin to stay.
Carmelo Anthony had called the Rocket's offer "a ridiculous contract" on Sunday. "It was ridiculous for them to do what they did, as far as throwing that out there and making it tough on us to sign him back," he said. As for Jeremy Lin's now vague homecoming, Anthony commented, "I would love to see him back, honestly. (Owner James) Dolan definitely wants him back."
With the Knicks' committed salary for players Anthony, Amar'e Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler just scraping by the possible luxury tax threshold of US$76 million in 2013-14, the Rockets poisoned Lin's third-year contract with their nearly US$15 million offer. If the Knicks choke down the "poison pill," they will need to pay an additional US$28.5 million in tax penalties.
The luxury tax is imposed on teams whose payrolls go over a certain threshold that is set by the league, which is calculated according to revenues. Teams will be taxed for every dollar that goes over the threshold. The tax threshold for the 2012 season was roughly US$70 million. According to the NBA, for the upcoming season taxes will be imposed on an incremental basis, increasing along with each additional US$5 million spent over the initially defined level.