|Jeremy Lin will start for the Knicks next season. (Getty Images)|
This isn't a big shocker, but it is important because of context. When the Knicks added Jason Kidd, they added one of the best point guards in NBA history and a starting NBA champion point guard just two years ago. Even with the Knicks expected to match an offer sheet from Houston for Jeremy Lin, Kidd brings with him enough credentials to ask the question about who starts.
Well, the question has been answered. From the New York Daily News:
Knicks coach Mike Woodson confirmed on Wednesday that Lin, who has just 25 career starts under his belt, will start ahead of Kidd, the future Hall of Fame point guard. Woodson's announcement also confirms what everyone has known for weeks; the Knicks will match the offer sheet Lin signed with the Houston Rockets.
Both decisions are not surprising. However, just because Lin is the starter doesn't mean he'll be the closer. Kidd, who turns 40 in March, can't average 30-plus minutes a night, but his experience and leadership could make him too valuable not to play in the final minutes of close games.
“Jason's a veteran guy that brings leadership, and I thought it would be a perfect fit for Jeremy Lin in terms of being able to tutor him as he grows as a point guard for our franchise,” Woodson said before the Knicks' summer-league practice in Vegas. “Jason can still play and run a ballclub.”
It's the right move. Kidd's ability to make plays diminished significantly last season, and even his spot-up shooting suffered. It will be interesting, though, to see who fits better in Woodson's offense. With so much of the action being driven through Carmelo Anthony in isolation, a pick-and-roll, non-spot-up guard like Lin has less value whereas Kidd, as a spot-up shooter, has more. It wouldn't surprise anyone for Lin to struggle in an offense where Melo is the beginning, the middle and the end.
We'll have to see how the minutes shake out and how things end, but at least we know Lin enters the season as the starter. How this gets worked out will be a much bigger question for the Knicks.
Lin is reportedly upset with the Knicks over how contract talks have gone.