Saturday, 11 February 2012
THE LIN DYNASTY
The new New York Knick.
By TIM DAVID HARVEY
Those who thought Asia's influence on the basketball world retired with Yao Ming are wrong.
They forgot about an Asian-American named Jeremy Lin.
A Los Angeles-born, Harvard grad who only this season was waived by Yao's former Houston Rockets , Lin has made the Knicks and New York City his own.
He has taken the Knicks' bad form, Baron Davis's injury woes and Amar'e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony's suit-and-tie roles and made them a secondary story.
He has has taken the attention from mega-stars Anthony and Stoudemire and created a core group of Lin fans who shine brighter than the lights in Times Square a few blocks away.
Those fans are making his jersey out-sell those new trade-deadline jerseys, and stretch longer than Manhattan, The Bronx, Queens, Staten Island and Brooklyn, not to mention the Meadowlands and New Jersey. Or for that matter, the whole National Basketball Association and the United States Of America.
China, Taiwan and the rest of Asia, not to mention the rest of the world, are watching as well.
Lin is even taking over the world's biggest community; Twitter.
Lin took Kobe's comments about not knowing who he is and made him eat them along with his Spalding. He outscored Kobe 38-34 Friday night at Madison Square Garden, beating a team that usually makes MSG its own in early February. But not this leap year.
Four more points and a forgone conclusion later, Kobe knows who Lin is now.
Jeremy Shu-How Lin.
This is more than a hot streak. It's the end of a cold winter in New York City. This unseasonable warmth is making this city hotter than Lana Del Rey. Lin's play is like what you see in video games. Flawless.
His Knicks weren't born to die. Success is coming like Earl The Pearl and Walt Frazier. Jeremy Lin was born to run.
How good is this kid?
We must apologize to the Erie BayHawks because the NBDL isn't for Lin anymore. He belongs to the big leagues now. His averages of 11.2 points and 1.90 rebounds in Erie don't do him justice. Last night's 38 beans against Kobe Bryant does.
Sure, here comes the hype and the buzz, but it's justified. This young man is that good.
It's more than the points scored. It's how he's lifted a team and a city that over this last year were engineered to be great but faltered at the start of the season. It's the potential we can see. Trust when they start picking Rookie's of the Year, Lin will be more than just a consideration.
When Amar'e, Carmelo, Baron and Tyson Chandler get it together, the Knicks will be much more than a team bobbing for apples. They'll be a team with a core hotter than magma, but with the volcano erupting talent of Lin they'll be so much more.
The kid who was being written off because of his slender figure is rewriting the Knicks season script, bulking up and bolstering their roster.
And now the whole world is watching a kid who's putting a team, a city and two continents on those skinny-but-strong shoulders.
Just how good could this kid get?