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NBA NOTEBOOK: Knicks must decide today whether to bring back Linsanity; Hawks acquire Bulls sharpshooter Korver, waive Farmar

The Knicks have until one minute before midnight today to match the Rockets’ three-year, $25 million offer for Jeremy Lin — a contract some of his own teammates have called flat out “ridiculous.”

The Knicks have until one minute before midnight today to match the Rockets’ three-year, $25 million offer for Jeremy Lin — a contract some of his own teammates have called flat out “ridiculous.”

Wade’s ex-wife — in middle of custody fight with NBA star — sees her 12th attorney quit

CHICAGO — The ex-wife of Miami Heat star Dwayne Wade will be getting another lawyer to represent her in a protracted divorce and child-custody battle with the NBA star.

A Chicago judge on Monday ruled a lawyer for Siohvaughn Funches-Wade can quit.

Attorney Michael Haber filed a motion last week saying his relationship with Funches-Wade had reached a point where he can no longer represent her.

Cook County Circuit Judge Marya Nega ruled for Haber, despite Funches-Wade’s claim it would be expensive for her to hire another lawyer. However, when the judge asked if she was prepared to find her 13th attorney, she replied: “Yes.”

Funches-Wade is accused of child abduction for allegedly failing to return their sons to Wade in a timely manner over the Father’s Day weekend.

HEAT, CLIPPERS TO PLAY IN CHINA: The NBA champion Miami Heat will play two preseason games against the Los Angeles Clippers in China this fall. The teams will meet Oct. 11 at MasterCard Center in Beijing and Oct. 14 at Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai.

It’s the first time the reigning NBA champions will play in the NBA China Games.

Eight NBA teams will play in eight international games in October as part of the league’s international preseason schedule.

The Dallas Mavericks will play games in Barcelona and Berlin, and the Boston Celtics will play games in Istanbul and Milan against top Euroleague teams.

Toronto and the New York Knicks will play in Montreal, and Minnesota and Detroit will play in Winnipeg.

NEW YORK — This would have been such an obvious decision in February.

Jeremy Lin was Kobe Bryant’s equal on the court and at the souvenir stand during a mesmerizing stretch that Commissioner David Stern said he had “never quite seen anything like.”

No way the New York Knicks were letting Lin get away back then, when he was the biggest thing in basketball.

Things are different now.

Lin no longer plays for a coach whose offense seems designed for him. He’s coming off knee surgery and would come at a monstrous cost — thanks to an offer sheet from the Houston Rockets he signed — even for one of the league’s richest teams.

So what once would have been an easy answer now creates so many questions.

Do the Knicks want Lin back?

Does Lin want to come back?

When will it be resolved?

The last one should be easiest, but this being the Knicks, isn’t exactly. Teams have three days to match an offer sheet for their restricted free agents, so the Rockets believe the clock expires at 11:59 tonight.

Except the Knicks have never confirmed if they received the offer sheet from the Rockets on Saturday, so it’s possible they have a different deadline in mind, which could even lead to some kind of dispute or protest.

The contract is for three years and about $25 million, an enormous figure for someone who has made 25 starts.

And Lin’s teammates — at least two of them — think it could cause issues.

On Monday, Carmelo Anthony spoke out first, then J.R. Smith.

“It’s up to the organization to say they want to match that ridiculous contract that’s out there,” Anthony said, before adding that he’d “love to see him back.”

Smith, meanwhile, wasn’t as politically correct.

“I think some guys take it personal, because they’ve been doing it longer and haven’t received any reward for it yet,” said Smith, who recently re-signed with the Knicks for two years and $5.6 million. “I think it’s a tough subject to touch on for a lot of guys.”

After paying Lin about $5 million per year the first two seasons, it balloons to nearly $15 million in the final year but would cost the Knicks more than twice that in luxury tax payments under the harsher penalties in the new collective bargaining agreement.

The terms of the original offer Lin had agreed to were four years and about $28 million, creating speculation that he went back to the Rockets and asked for something that would be tougher for the Knicks to match.

A number of fans want them to do it anyway, more than 5,000 signing an online petition at Change.org asking the Knicks to keep him. Team officials, who repeatedly said they intended to keep Lin before he signed the offer, won’t comment on their plans now.

Maybe the Knicks could have avoided this by making Lin an offer right away. Instead they let him find one elsewhere first, which is what many teams do with restricted free agents.

Given his popularity in New York and all the opportunities it affords, it’s difficult to imagine he’d want to sabotage his own chances of returning. Yet maybe he doesn’t see the same potential for himself under Mike Woodson as he showed in Mike D’Antoni’s pick-and-roll offense. Or perhaps he’s one of the many who sees the futility of the Carmelo Anthony-Amare Stoudemire pairing and doesn’t want the burden of being the point guard charged with making it work.

And maybe the Knicks don’t believe he is, anyway. They made a veteran point guard a top priority in free agency, missing out on Steve Nash but signing Jason Kidd. Then they agreed to a sign-and-trade with Portland to bring back Raymond Felton to New York in deal that was completed Monday.

None brings the marketing potential of Lin, whose story of undrafted Harvard graduate to unexpected NBA star was a hit around the world. (How many other players went into free agency with “Time” magazine list of top 100 most influential people on their resume?)

That gives Houston plenty of reason to want him back. The NBA’s first American-born player of Chinese or Taiwanese decent would continue to grow the popularity the Rockets already enjoy in Asia thanks to their retired star, Yao Ming.

The Rockets had Lin on their roster during the preseason before waiving him, with two point guards ahead of him on the depth chart and an open roster spot needed to add a big man.

It wasn’t long before they wished they’d done differently, general manager Daryl Morey writing on Twitter during Lin’s dazzling stretch, when he averaged 24.6 points and 9.2 assists in 10 games from Feb. 4-20, that cutting Lin was a mistake.

Now it’s up to the Knicks. Keep Linsanity where it was born or risk the same regret.


Hawks acquire 3-point shooter Korver from Bulls, waive Farmar

ATLANTA — The active Atlanta Hawks improved their long-distance shooting Monday, acquiring small forward Kyle Korver from the Chicago Bulls for a trade exception and cash.

The 6-foot-7 Korver averaged 8.1 points for the Bulls in 65 games last season, including seven starts. He ranked 10th in the NBA by making 43.5 percent of his 3-point attempts.

First-year Hawks general manager Danny Ferry has been busy since taking over a few days before last month’s NBA draft.

He traded two longtime starters, All-Star guard Joe Johnson and forward Marvin Williams. Those deals brought in guards Devin Harris, Anthony Morrow, Jordan Farmar and DeShawn Stevenson, and forwards Jordan Williams and Johan Petro. The Hawks also signed guard Lou Williams.

Korver gives Ferry and coach Larry Drew an experienced shooter who can help replace Johnson and Williams.

“I appreciate the toughness and the competitive energy Kyle brings to the game every night, and we’re very excited to add him to our team,” Ferry said. “Adding him makes shooting an even greater strength for our club.”

The 31-year-old Korver has made at least 40 percent of his 3-point shots in six of his nine seasons with Philadelphia, Utah and Chicago. He set a league record by making 53.6 percent of his 3-point shots in the 2009-10 season with the Jazz.

Ferry’s first draft pick for Atlanta last month was another strong 3-point shooter, guard John Jenkins of Vanderbilt. Jenkins was regarded as one of the top shooters in the draft.

The team requested waivers on Farmar on Monday.

Farmar is one of five players acquired from the Brooklyn Nets in the deal for Johnson.

Farmar played in Israel during the NBA lockout last summer and has indicated he may return to Europe.

The Hawks are saving salary cap space by removing Farmar from their roster.

The 6-foot-2 Farmar averaged a career-high 10.4 points in 39 games, including five starts, with the Nets last season. Farmer was drafted out of UCLA by the Los Angeles Lakers with the No. 26 overall pick in the 2006 draft.