Jeremy Lin is not among the biggest NBA free agents this summer, but the Charlotte Hornets guard is expected draw attention on the market. According to recent reports, the Dallas Mavericks and the New York Knicks are in the running for Lin’s service this offseason.
Lin will become an unrestricted free agent in July after announcing that he will opt out of the second season of his four-year, $4.37 million deal with the Hornets. The former Harvard University standout is open to returning to Charlotte but will listen to offers from other teams.
The Mavericks could be one of the teams who will make a bid to Lin when the free agency period begins, Mavs Money Ball reported. Dallas will target Mike Conley or attempt to re-sign former All-Star Deron Williams. But if Conley and Williams decides to go elsewhere, Lin could eventually land in Dallas.
Lin, who averaged 11.7 points on top of 3.2 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game last season, wants to start and get more playing time next season. If Williams leave and Conley signs elsewhere, Jeremy Lin could be offered a starting role in Dallas with JJ Barea and Devin Harris as his backups.
Meanwhile, the veteran playmaker is also being linked to a reunion with the Knicks. However, New York is not an ideal landing spot at this point after the Knicks acquired Derrick Rose, who will start for them next season. Lin admitted that Rose’s makes the reunion unlikely but clarified that he is not closing his doors for the Knicks.
“I will say, ever since I left I’ve been open to going back, and I still am,” Lin told reporters in China on Sunday via Sporting News. “Never say never. That’s the one thing in the NBA. Never say never. So I’ve always been open, but right now, I’m not sure it’s the best timing.”
Lin had his breakout season in New York back in 2012, which was later coined Linsanity. The 27-year-old averaged 23.9 points and 9.2 assists in an 11-game span, which was enough for him to earn a big paycheck that year — not with the Knicks but with the Houston Rockets.
The Rockets are also considered favorites to sign Lin this summer. The Rockets hired head coach Mike D’Antoni, who was Lin’s coach during breakout year in the Big Apple more than four years ago.