Feb 19, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Houston Rockets guard Jeremy Lin (7) is defended by Los Angeles Lakers center Robert Sacre (50) at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
While there were reported to have been several takers for the contract of Jeremy Lin and his $15 million backloaded contract, it ultimately ended up that the Los Angeles Lakers bit, according to Sam Amick of USA Sports.
The move was done posturing to clear the room to sign free agent Chris Bosh (per ESPN), but he ultimately decided to remain with the Miami Heat.
Lin’s contract expires at the end of the 2014-15 season, so this will clear cap room for the Lakers at that point. The specifications of the first round pick were not specified, but the Lakers are also said to be responsible for giving the Rockets an “overseas player” and cash.
It’s a bit hard to get excited about the mention of some unknown overseas player, nor cash, but the motivation for clearing Lin’s contract was rather obvious.
While the Rockets may have struck out on Bosh, the dominoes should begin to fall rather quickly with LeBron James and Chris Bosh already having chosen their respective fates.
The real issue is late breaking rumors that the Chicago Bulls are nearing an agreement with Pau Gasol. Gasol almost certainly would have become plan B after Chris Bosh.
Pau Gasol, Chicago working to complete an agreement, league sources tell Yahoo Sports.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 12, 2014
The main issue at this point is finding a veteran 4-man to compliment Howard, and preferably one capable of stretching the floor. Bosh and Gasol both perfectly fulfill those needs, while the young Terrence Jones is still a work in progress.
While many Rockets fans will lament the loss of Lin, it serves as a move which could ultimately better the team. And Morey needs not feel compelled to spend just because the cap space has been created.
Rajon Rondo will be a free agent next summer, heading an enticing crop that the bucks could be devoted to. Even should a top-tier free agent not be signed this summer, the chance was taken to obtain Bosh and Lin’s production can easily be supplanted with a mid-level contract (e.g., D.J. Augustin or Rodney Stuckey).