From what I've heard and calculated, it would be theoretically possible for the Knicks to offer Nash the 5 million exception, but it would probably mean renouncing some combo of Fields, Novak or J.R. Smith in order to stay below the Apron and get the 5 million MLE rather than the 3 million MLE.
I think the Knicks will offer it to Nash, but I don't think they'll offer that to anyone else. And from what I hear, the Raptors are prepared to offer Nash a contract in the 10 million dollar range, and the Mavs may be too if they aren't able to get Deron.
So I don't see Nash actually signing here and leaving 5 million per season on the table to enter a potentially sticky 'who is the starter' situation. IF he's going to take a mid-level deal, the Knicks have the edge, I'd say, but I think it's unlikely he will.
That leaves us with plan B, which is to bring back Fields, Novak and J.R., and offer the 3 million exception to the best veteran point guard available. I think there's a reasonable possibility that Kidd could take it. I doubt Andre Miller would. But Ray Felton might be a real possibility.Now, Ray-Ray no doubt wants to be a starter. And after finishing a contract where he was making 9 million, he undoubtedly wants to make more money than 3 million per season. But the NBA is fickle, and this guy's value is dirt-low right now. He's coming off a season where an entire fanbase turned violently against him, and where he shot about 5 percent below his normal shooting averages. He also was a bit portly, and in today's NBA, this is like, the cardinal sin for some reason.
So I don't think there's any way that any other team in the NBA signs Felton to be their starter, or uses more than 3 million of their precious cap space to sign him. The dude is persona non-grata right now.
But the thing is, he's actually a pretty ideal candidate for backup point guard, if he can accept the role (and he may not have a choice at this point). He's can control the tempo of the game well. He has command out there. He plays pretty good defense. He's not a great scorer but he can score enough to keep teams honest, particularly if he's not disgruntled. And he's still only like 28 years old, so he can grow with the team. And he's demonstrated chemistry with Amar'e and Fields.
Personally, I was very sad when they traded him, so I'm wondering if I'm just being nostalgic, but I think that in terms of value for the money with the 3 million we have, Felton may be the best fit. What do you think?