Two things about the Knicks' complex offseason.

I do not know very many things, but I do what I can to find things out. Here are two things that I now know and that you might like to know about the Knicks and the next few weeks:

Thing 1: Over the weekend, a lot of us were wondering if those dastardly NBA punks even had time to appeal Kenneth Dam's ruling that Jeremy Lin and Steve Novak should be granted Bird rights. Free agency begins on July 1. The appellate process isn't set to start until tomorrow. What happens if-- as will surely be the case-- the process takes longer than that interim to conclude? The answer, from the sound of things, is that nobody's sure yet. Marc Berman heard/guessed that these guys could keep their Bird rights despite the appeal (I guess an overturning of the decision would only affect future players in the same situation?). Tommy Dee heard/guessed the opposite, which would be pretty unfair to the Knicks. Chris Sheridan suggested it could get reallllly messy if things don't move fast. Hopefully, those involved appreciate the need for haste and play out the appeal before July 1. Ideally, the panel will read the appeal, be like "Fuck this! LINSANITY 2013!!!! NOVAKAINE Y'ALL!!!!1" and uphold the ruling immediately. We'll see.

Thing 2: There have been many questions about the Knicks' ability to acquire a first round pick on Thursday. For weeks, I've been parroting the notion that the Knicks lost their $3 million "cash considerations" (annually allotted, I guess?) in the Tyson Chandler deal, and thus cannot "buy" a first round pick like they did to select Toney Douglas a couple years ago. However, a sneaky alternative has been suggested and explained to me by Jon of the Knicks FanBlog (with some help from @KnickScoop): The Knicks have three players with non-guaranteed money on the books for next season: Josh Harrellson, Jerome Jordan, and Dan Gadzuric (the last of which I didn't know about). According to the savvy Twitter folk, the Knicks could deal one or two of those non-guaranteed contracts (with Gadzuric's $1.3 million being the likely starting point) for the first-rounder of a top-flight team in the late first round. A good team that's looking to dump a bit of salary and isn't interested in developing a rookie could give up a player with a small guaranteed contract and/or a first-rounder (also a guaranteed contract) for a couple of the Knicks' non-guaranteed bros, and perhaps a second-rounder. Said good team would then cut Gadzuric et al and get some cap relief. Living, breathing humans essentially play the role of "cash considerations" in this scenario. Late first-rounders-- the most exciting entities in the world, I think-- are like a nuisance to these fancy-ass elite teams. It's disgusting. (A non-elite team that just owns more first-rounders than they want could also make this type of money-saving deal. Just saying.)

Bonus thing: J.R. Smith has until tomorrow (not sure what time) to pick up his 2012-2013 option. If he declines the option, he could ask for the Knicks to resign him with a 20 percent raise.

So, yeah, according to Jon and company, it was savvy of Glen Grunwald to put a non-guaranteed second year on Gadzuric's contract, and it may allow the Knicks to deal for a first-rounder. I cannot vouch for this concept beyond what I just shared, but Jon's smart and it seems to make sense if the Knicks can afford it. For what it's worth, the Knicks haven't worked out very many guys with any chance of going in the first round, or at least they haven't made mention of it.

In short, those involved with the league's appeal better hustle if they don't want to make things weird and dicey and the Knicks might actually have a strategy to acquire a first round pick if they want one. If you have information or knowledge to confirm, deny, or complicate either of those assertions, please share. We're all in this together!

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