First of all, DOLAN, GO FUCK YOURSELF, but don't make me watch.
OK. exhale. Here's my thinking.
Now, Carmelo is a very talented player. And he's a charismatic and friendly guy. But he very much has an "I'm the man" mindset. As the guy with the best one on one offensive skills, he seems to enjoy the accolades and the fame associated with that skill a little much. He seems to think his strengths are the most important aspect of the game. He can be made to recognize that it's important that he play defense and rebound and pass. But in the end, he thinks his isolation skills make him the dominant alpha-male player. And he likes being that guy. And his best friends are also those guys.
This year, along comes Jeremy Lin. Lin suddenly shows that not only can he score and make clutch baskets down the stretch, but he can also set up his teammates to succeed. He is humble, and his teammates love him. And the fans love him even more. And he wins games. He becomes the most important cog in the Knicks machine, in very short order. Perhaps it's unjustified, but there's little doubt that he had a huge effect and has changed the dynamic of the team.
I think that Dolan thinks very highly of Melo and trusts him. I think Melo has Dolan's ear, based on the meeting they had. In a sense, I think Melo is the new Isiah - the guy Dolan admires and trusts. The guy Dolan will overspend for while he fights over giving 25 cents for someone else. I know most of you won't agree with me, but I believe it anyway.
Now, Melo's an OK guy. But the fact is, even though I think he likes Lin well enough, I think he's threatened by Lin's presence and I think he doesn't want to believe that this guy that came out of nowhere, undrafted, not a big college star, is somehow more important to the basketball team than him. Perhaps, on some level, if Lin is really that good, maybe there are other guys out there that good, and maybe Melo's position at the top of the 'best players' ladder would be threatened by these unheralded guys that actually know how to play the full game of basketball better. Melo's entire reality is predicated on the fact that he is inherently better. He's always been told that, ever since he was in middle school. So I think he tells Dolan that, while Lin is good and worth keeping, he's not that great. Subconciously, Melo would rather have someone else besides Lin as the point guard running the team, someone who is not as popular or famous, or someone from his highly-rated, famous crew (Paul).
So I think Melo tells this to Dolan, and Dolan tells Grunwald to set about getting point guards - first going after Nash, then Kidd. When they get Kidd, they also bring in Prigioni. Then, the big offer sheet gets signed with the balloon payment, and the Knicks go after Felton. In the process, they ship off several of guys who are obviously very loyal to Lin, and let Landry Fields go.
Then, they claim it's about the numbers. And sure, that balloon payment would have cost the Knicks some ridiculous 50 million or something with luxury taxes. But long before it was about the numbers, it was about the Knicks setting out from the very beginning of free agency to sign other point guards without making Lin an offer. Not one guy, but two guys, then three guys.
Who advised Dolan that Lin was not good enough to prioritize? Was it just Dolan himself? I don't think so. Dolan saw a lot of dollars due to Lin. He was good for the Knicks brand. He even made Dolan look good. Was it Grunwald? That doesn't make any sense. Glen went after Lin in the first place. Was it Woodson? Maybe, I mean Woodson likes veterans. But he also kept starting Lin and kept saying he was a big part of the future. Was it any of the players? Chandler? No way. Landry, Novak, Jeffries, Douglas? Impossible. Shumpert? Uh-uh. Stoudemire? I don't think so. I think Stoudemire loved Jeremy. It doesn't seem to be in his personality to care who's getting the accolades. After all, Stoudemire's shot attempts have gone way down since Carmelo got there. He liked being second fiddle to Nash.
To me, it was the guy that Dolan met by himself before that trade deadline. The guy Dolan did anything to get. The guy Dolan refused to consider trading when D'antoni suggested it. The guy that gets pissy at his teammates when they don't pass to him. The guy who loves to refer to himself as a team leader.
I'm tellin' you guys, Dolan's man-crush went from Isiah to Melo. And we are seeing the same type of bullshit moves that disrespect the fans and the game of basketball to cater to the insecure whims of one guy. By prioritizing other point guards and by belittling Lin's accomplishments and abilities, Dolan squarely put himself in the position of having to overpay for a point guard when he had 3 decent ones on the roster already. Then he claimed it was a numbers thing.
That's my take on it. Something about this whole business made me suddenly think of Melo in a poor light, and I think this is why.