The Nets' new head coach was the assistant that helped unleash "Linsanity" on New York back in 2012, and with the Nets in need of a point guard, a reunion may be in the cards.
"I think you could see Jeremy Lin, who's going to be a free agent, I could see him looking at Brooklyn as a destination for him because a) he's coming back to New York where he can become a megastar again, but b) because that's the coach," Knicks analyst Alan Hahn said on ESPN Radio. Kenny Atkinson is the reason Linsanity was Linsanity. Jeremy will tell you that."
NetsDaily cites sources that say Brooklyn offered Lin a multi-year deal last offseason, but the two sides were about $1.5 million apart on a starting salary.
Lin has a $2.2 million player option for 2016-17, which he is likely to decline.
It would certainly be an interesting pairing. Lin had a great year this season, as he averaged 11.7 points, three assists, and a career-low 1.9 turnovers per game for Charlotte. Would he be a gigantic improvement over what the Nets used after Jarrett Jack's injury? Absolutely. Enough to anchor Brooklyn's offense? It's hard to say.
The key for the Nets in the Brooklyn era has always been their point guard play. They have plenty of talent up front, between Brook Lopez and Thad Young. They absolutely need someone to be able to distribute and knock down shots from the outside when they're called upon. It's why Deron Williams seemed like the perfect fit, and was when he was healthy and motivated. But it will also be a question of just how lofty the Nets' expectations are for their $40 million in cap room, and how fast they want to spend it. With tons of teams in position to spend this summer, values will be inflated. So if the Nets feel a guy like Jeff Teague, who also loves Atkinson, is attainable, maybe they go that way. But if they want to bolster multiple positions, they could opt for Lin and another player.