"There was no conversation other than them telling me they weren't interested," Lin said before the Knicks' preseason game against the Charlotte Hornets on Saturday, according to the New York Daily News.
Lin emerged from the end of the Knicks' bench in 2012 to establish himself as a global phenomenon by sparking New York to six straight wins and helping the club reach the postseason.
Many expected the Knicks to re-sign Lin, a restricted free agent, in the summer of 2012. But the Houston Rockets and the guard agreed to a three-year, $25 million offer sheet. The Knicks declined to match.
Lin, who signed with Charlotte over the summer, told the Daily News he's never ruled out a return to the Knicks.
"I've always been open to it, ever since I, you know, I don't want to say I necessarily left, ever since [they decided they didn't want to re-sign me]," Lin said. "But I've always been open to it. But I don't think they're as open to it.
"[There's no animosity] from my perspective," Lin added. "I understand. And I understand why it happened. But no animosity. To be honest, I'm very much past it."
Despite a report in July that the Knicks were interested in signing Lin, the club never considered it. They acquired Notre Dame guard Jerian Grant in a draft-day trade and were comfortable starting the season with veteran Jose Calderon at point guard.
Lin hasn't duplicated the on-court success that he enjoyed in 2012 with the Knicks in subsequent seasons, including a stint with the Los Angeles Lakers.
"It was very difficult for various reasons. In Houston, they kind of brought me in and didn't know they were going to get James (Harden). Me and James are both ball-dominant pick-and-roll players," he said. "And L.A. was just a different system and they were going in a different direction in general."
Lin, 27, is optimistic about his new role in Charlotte.
"I can play [shooting guard]," Lin said. "I played it in college. So I've always said my bread and butter would be the point guard, but I have no problem playing the 2 as well. I consider myself a combo guard. And honestly in this system it's at times interchangeable."
ESPN.com's Ian Begley contributed to this report.