Asian basketball players making a loud noise in the international level is a very rare case. However, we are lucky to witness the beginning of a new era in Asian basketball during this time. Jeremy Lin, aside from Yao Ming, has also became one of the most popular Asians to play in the NBA.
Basketball fans all over the world have rejoiced and witnessed the beginning of “Linsanity”. Lin has taken the NBA by storm during the shortened 2011-2012. Before Linsanity happened, Jeremy Lin was an undrafted point guard out of Harvard who wasn’t hyped to become an elite point guard and struggled to cement his place in the NBA.
He played in five Summer League games while playing for the Mavericks. During the course of the league, he had a match-up with John Wall, who was the first pick of the 2010 NBA Draft. It was the time when Lin had drawn attention from most of the people, as he received offers from big teams like Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks. However, Lin signed with the Golden State Warriors as his hometown.
It all began when then-Knicks coach Mike D’ Antoni threw him in as a sub during a game against New Jersey last February 4, 2012, which they won. From there, people began to see the young point guard run the show. During his stint as a starting point guard, he even outscored Kobe Bryant during the Lakers-Knicks game at the Garden, which they also won. He also scored 38 points in that game (video below). In his five starts, he scored at least 20 points and recorded seven assists. They went on to a seven game winning streak with Lin on the helm. However, they would go 8-1 (win-loss) when they defeated then-defending champions Dallas Mavericks in the process.
Lin was a kind of “down-to-earth” and humble person. He has also a strong devotion to God. Those traits are rarely seen in a player who is also shining under the bright lights.
His impact was one of the most memorable moments during the shortened 2011-2012 NBA season, and it would definitely be remembered for a long time, given the fact that he is Asian who is different from Yao Ming. Since he is just a rookie, he will never be destined to have a better future, unless he does something.
I personally believe that Linsanity will last longer, but time only will tell. Given his Chinese heritage, he could continuously make an impact in the world of basketball. The NBA association is already reaping the benefits. He has already drawn a lot of fan bases in Asia, and those will only continue to get larger and larger. His professional attitude would elevate him to the next level, if he continues to show that. He only gets better despite the racial criticisms and remarks thrown towards him. He is too nice not to make a controversy, and he isn’t stupid enough to throw the same bread he was hit before.
Regarding his basketball skills, he should continuously improve in every area even though he is naturally gifted. In some of the games, especially against the Heat, the defensively oriented team harassed Lin, making him force turnovers. There are games where his turnovers were higher than ratios. It may be a natural error for point guards, but it is suggested that he should work with his own ball handling. Lin kept saying that Steve Nash (one of the best point guards in the NBA history who can also shoot) is his inspiration. Therefore, he should just continue mastering his perimeter and three-point shooting. Most people say that this era is full of talented and elite point guards, so it will also be perfect for Lin to work his way up in order to match them.
Can he become an All-Star? Definitely, if he continues to play the way he did when he was given the opportunity. Be it a sixth man role player, a starter calibre, or an All-Star, he is very much capable of winning a championship ring.
People had seen a dose of Linsanity when he played at the bright lights of New York. Everything is now just up to Lin on how will he able to capitalize his moment by living up to the expectations. Moreover, everything is up to him on how would he deal with the media pressure and all the hype. He is still young at 23 years of age, so he has a decade to make the most out of his wonderful journey as a basketball player.
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