Monday, October 29, 2012

JLin and JHarden

The more I think about it the more I love this trade. JLin and JHarden will be an unbelievable duo and have to the potential to be one of the best backcourt tandem in years:

With that said, here are my most anticipated games of the season:

Dec 17 @Knicks
Nov 23 vs Knicks
Jan 26 vs Nets
Nov 12 vs. Miami


  1. Also vs Thunder.

    I posted the following to article, but I posted it so late in the game (few min ago), so I deleted it from there and here it is (next post).

  2. I'm certain that both Morey and McHale, while definitely not as high on Lin as Les (thank God he is the owner, a sharp one), know that Lin is a *good* acquisition (they don't yet know it's *great* one for the price). The following answer by Morey proves that he is merely putting everything in perspective, based on the amount of experience each of those star players have.

    Jason Friedman: Daryl, can a player like Harden make Houston more attractive as an NBA destination?

    Morey: I do think that’s a big factor in the NBA. I think we have an unbelievable city, top-five in the league, for players wanting to play here. When you add to that a James Harden as our All-Star, and we’ve got now multiple other players who players around the league say, ‘Hey, I want to play with that guy.’

    Omer Asik is someone who’s going to emerge to be that. He might not be there (now), but I think the fans who are here who are obviously diehards know that, the way Omer is playing, he’s going to be someone everyone is going to want to play with with his ability to pass, defend and rebound. Jeremy Lin is obviously someone who is exciting to play with and it going to keep improving at his age. Chandler Parsons obviously only going into his second year but it such a team guy, defender, passer. We’re really putting together a young core that other players around the league are going to say, ‘Hey, I want to play there.’

    And after we extend James we’re going to have max salary room going forward as well to add a very significant player when the time is right.

  3. Is this a case of dialing the wrong number or is JLin playing some sly head games with the rookie Machado--just to make sure he remembers he's a rookie and can be cut at any moment?

    I'm kidding...kind of. ;-)

    Lin bids farewell to wrong rookie

    1. Lamb's (L) and Machado's (M) cell phone numbers were probably right next to each other. Lin must have made the error in haste. (;~D) (;~O)

    2. Part of me thinks it was a brilliant "revenge" or rookie hazing prank by Jeremy. We all know he has a sense of humor (his YouTube vids) behind his quiet facade.

      I can practically see Chandler Parsons egging Jeremy on, daring him to do it: "Dude, just say it was an accident. They'll never be able to prove it!"

  4. JLin should make a Tweet or Facebook post for his fans in New York area who are being devastated by floods, fires, and power outages amid the hurricane. He still has a lot of loyal fans in the city.

    1. I agree about this one. Its terrible up here roads are closed, trains and buses and subways closed, power outages all over the east. 14 foot tide into battery park destroying previous records. It would be nice if Lin said something for us people in the East, even though we're not his team anymore.

    2. He actually did in FB.

      Jeremy Lin
      4 hours ago
      Praying for health and safety for everyone affected by Hurricane Sandy

      Hope everyone is staying safe in the East.
      The scene is really terrifying seeing the picture of subways being flooded. It reminds me a little bit of that "The Day After Tomorrow" movie. Hopefully it's just isolated incidents.

  5. Add the visit of the Lowry-led Raptors and Dragic-led Suns to the Toyota center.

    Lin should EMBARRASSED the two former "great" point guards of the die-hard Rockets fans.

    So the whining fans would finally shut up.

    1. Those two have a lot more experience than Lin, but I'll pick Lin over them hands down. Lin is improving very rapidly, like I'd thought and he will learn a lot with the new coach in McHale.

      But Lin is underrated by the "basketball minds" at the Rockets right now because they have been listening to "other basketball minds" in the league. Hey, I thought Morey was a numbers guy! (;~/). I'm glad his contract is only for 3 years; if they want to keep JLin badly after that, they will HAVE TO PAY $$$. Unless Morey and McHale are no longer there ( They're okay but sold on Lin maybe 75%), in which case JLin should give Les a big discount because he freed JLin from the Nits! I want Les to be wildly successful with the franchise.

    2. People think Morey is a numbers guy. Morey thinks of himself as a numbers guy. But actually he's one of those guys who actually don't believe in his own stats analysis, and rely on "look" more than anyone. He drafted Royce White because White has a bread and a trendy look of a nba player. He drafted Patterson and Terence Jones because they came from a famous school like Kentucky. He traded away Lamb because Lamb looks like he has a lazy look. He cut Lin before because Lin is an Asian. He traded the farm for Harden because of Harden's name appeal more than his advanced stats. Don't believe for a second that Morey actually knows more about basketball, watch more games or like to analyze bball stats than you and me.

      There is a reason the Houston Rockets were in the lottery for 3 straight years since Morey was hired. Those diehard Rockets fans are mistakenly blaming Les Alexander than Morey for that because they love Morey's trendy and seemingly intelligent talk of stats. They dislike Les although Les knows more about bball and business than anyone in that organization. But as we here know, even if the Rockets do turn around starting from this year, it's more due to Les's pushing for the Lin signing more than any Morey fake stats driven drafts/trades/signings.

    3. Chuckle, you are funny Cara. Some - maybe all - of what you say about Morey may be right, LOL. That is not all a bad thing, however, *IF* Morey is also going by gut feelings (i.e., intuition, which is a higher faculty of the mind). On the other hand, if Morey is going by what all other GMs are going by (the basketball colleges, appearances, he-man-tatoo), then he is just another follower, a conformist, not a leader. LOL

    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    5. Sorry, I'm the black sheep here.

      I think you guys are all wrong on this. Morey and McHale are intentionally downplaying Jeremy's talent because they know what a lightening rod of hate/controversy he is. There is NOTHING to be gained by hyping him up after a 26 game sample (no matter how convincing it was).

      Frankly, I would do the exact same thing. Let Jeremy focus on hoops and then proceed to "shock" everyone with his continued success. BTW, Adrian Woj's insider article even stated that Morey believes Lin will be a star.

      Newsflash: Public figures (politicians, executives, actors, athletes) mess with and LIE to the media all the time.

    6. @zxcvb

      I think you are overestimating Morey's intelligence. I really feel that he means every word he says. Anyways, I actually like the way Morey and McHale dislikes and underestimates Jeremy. This way, they will again be surprised by Jeremy's performance


      I agree with everything you said except the Lamb trade.
      He didn't trade Lamb because of his lazy look but because the Thunder asked for Lamb. Right now, Harden is more proven and definitely better. They want to attract superstars in Houston so they tried to get an all-star caliber in Harden. So Morey has no choice, alright.

      I have been very skeptical of Lamb. He might have been talented as shown in his performance in the summer league but I've personally watched him in the preseason games against NBA caliber opponents. I am shocked by his effort or should I say lack of effort. I don't even look at his sleepy face. I can easily conclude that his body language isn't good. His defense is atrocious and very discouraging. He may improve but by how much. He seems lazier than Royce White and Scott Machado in playing defense.

      Basically, Lamb was not traded because of his lazy look. It was the right choice for Morey if you ask me.

    7. Ztrta, you are exactly right. Morey is a follower, rather than a leader. Don't be like Zxcvb and many others to be fooled by Morey's MIT resume and overestimate Morey's intelligence. Even Nep recognized that.

      Nep, I think you are wrong about Lamb. Not only you couldn't really judge anyone by a few preseason games, hey, even Lin shot 20%, it didn't mean a damn thing. I also suspect trade talks partly affected Lamb's performance and general body language you mentioned. Imagine if you were a 20 year old rookie but already involved in such an unstable trade talking environment, you would be shook too.

      Also, Royce White and Machado are not lazy playing D. It's their lack of footspeed and athleticism making them unable to be defenders. Lamb won't be lacking in comparsion.

    8. Lamb is not ready to be a big time contributor yet, but he will be.

      It took ONE practice for OKC coach Scotty Brooks and superstar Kevin Durant to believe in Jeremy Lamb. They see the future in him and don't believe he's "lazy".

      I'll go with Brooks and Durant's high opinion of Lamb over neph's assertion that Jeremy Lamb is an NBA failure.

    9. Lamb was traded because the Rockets had the chance to flip him for a better, more proven and still very young player. Any GM, owner or coach in the league worth his salt would have done the same.

      Lamb wasn't even going to start this year because he wasn't good enough. Martin would have started over Lamb this year, and also next year unless the Rockets traded Martin. Why? Because Lamb is 20 years old and from a college program (UConn) that doesn't really emphasize preparing their players for the NBA. He will be a very good player down the line, but why wait that long when you can get a better player than Lamb and Martin are today? Remember: Jeremy Lin's contract is only for 3 years. If Houston doesn't get better fast, Lin will be the next guy out of town, and Morey knows it.

      I read in the Oklahoma city newspaper that Lamb is thrilled to be with the Thunder. The link is below. Lamb didn't seem that happy to be in Houston. So, they replaced a 2 year project who prefers to be in Oklahoma City with a guy who can help them win games right away that wants to be in Houston. A good move for the Rockets.

    10. I wasn't unhappy with Jeremy Lamb's play.

      He scored 8ppg this preseason and stayed on the court. He wasn't the utter bust that people here are making him out to be, just like Jeremy Lin didn't have the horrible preseason that everybody is trying to say he had (6-1 record).

      Some rookies start out slow and then pick up momentum. I firmly believe that Lamb will be one of those players. With OKC, he will still get minutes and will be steadily groomed to take over Harden's 6th man spot whether Kevin Martin is there or not.

      Lamb learned flawless UConn shooting guard fundamentals. He is a gunner in the mold of Ben Gordon and Ray Allen and Richard Hamilton. When Jeremy Lamb acclimates to the NBA, I expect him to become a player of that caliber.

    11. KHuang:

      UConn players do need to pick up the game though because when they first hit the NBA they are soft. Ray Allen was the fastest to adapt. And Lamb is no Ray Allen.

      Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against Jeremy Lamb. But the Rockets were right to trade him for a guy who is already much further along. Harden may not have Lamb's upside - though I still say that Harden himself still hasn't reached his potential - but the Rockets need to win games now and upside won't do that.

    12. Unknown,

      Funny you would say that UConn is not a program that prepare nba players considering this is probably the hotbed school of nba shooting guards that produced the likes of Ray Allen!

    13. Unknown,

      How would the Rockets need to win now when there is still a huge hole in their frontcourt? Even with Harden, the Rockets aren't winning anything.

    14. Yes Unknown, UConn shooting guards do have an adjustment period.

      It's kind of the opposite of Kentucky which sends their players to the NBA with NBA toughness but not NBA skills. UConn sends players to the NBA with NBA skills but not NBA toughness.

      Once UConn players adjust to the NBA, they do very well because they have polished skills. I agree that Jeremy Lamb isn't ready to be a big contributor right away, but he certainly will become one because the skills are 100% there and so is the athleticism. Besides, the Rockets had Kevin Martin starting. Lamb did a good job off the bench for the Rockets.

      Unknown, you need to know something else about me. When I see a guy like Jeremy Lamb that has the skills but not the body, I'm willing to take a chance on him. I'd rather have Jeremy Lamb than a guy like Michael Kidd-Gilchrist who I think has very limited real basketball talent despite being a good athlete, plus I think that Lamb will be a far better athlete down the line than MKG. With incoming NBA guards, I want to see them have as complete a skillset as possible even if the body isn't grown up yet.

    15. @Cara:

      The Rockets have another max contract to get a power forward. Do that, and they'll have a "big 3" with good complementary players like the Heat, Celtics etc.


      I see your point. I don't disagree that UConn doesn't consistently put out good skilled players. I was merely speaking of contributing right away vs. contributing eventually, not contributing eventually vs. possibly never consistently contributing like the Kidd-Gilchrist example. If a guy has a good attitude, then becoming tougher is a lot easier than becoming skilled, you know the great athlete that never becomes a great player type.

      I liked Lamb. I just think that Harden will help the Rockets more. Lin needs help, and Harden will help Lin more than Lamb will the next year or 2.

    16. @zxcvb

      You and I were talking about two separate issues.

      I was referring to the article that circulated, in which it stated that it was Les Alexander who was keen on signing Lin (we all knew it anyway), and NOT the "basketball minds" of the Rockets organization - which, by the way, came out right after Lin's so-called "bad preseason games", as if the "basketball minds" from there wanted to distance themselves from endorsing Jeremy Lin, in an attempt to "salvage" their "tarnished" professional reputation, and thus protect their own future in the industry. LOL SMH (;~/)..... This means that credit for signing Lin should go to Alexander, the owner - and only him. Signing Lin was a no-brainer this time around; and the amount of the contract had to be a bit higher than it could have been, just because Lin was a restricted FA (the same with Asik).

      Regarding Morey and McHale saying (whether directly or implied) Harden is the franchise player of the Rockets: Not only they are correct (Harden proved it for 2-3 years), but it will take some pressure off Lin by causing the media to relax about the newbie being the face of the team. Everyone knew that the Rockets were actively looking to add a major player or two, in order to complete the team.

  6. Call me crazy, but I predict a "comeback" game and upset win against the Heat on the 12th. Jeremy was tired, inexperienced and playing on the road against a rested Heat team determined to shut him down. He'll be ready this time and have Harden to take some pressure off him.

    At the same time, I think Kobe and the Lakers are going to get their "revenge" on Jeremy in LA. Once they figure out their chemistry, they have too many weapons to let JL burn them twice in a row.

    1. Jeremy is not a miracle worker. He can't win with so little to work with. Especially against loaded teams like the Heat or Lakers. And Lin's game is still revolving this season. I have no idea what his season will look like in the current set up.

    2. Against the heat:

      I'm expecting a solid game and not a 20-10 game. Jeremy is still learning the game of basketball and the team's plays. I highly doubt they will beat the HEAT with so little experience and so little help.


      - To be fair, the Lakers won't be in their best form until the mid-season. But yes, Lin will definitely scouted by the LA. However, I expect Lin to torch Nash. He should post him up or punish him inside.

    3. The Bucks beat the Heat TWICE last year. Don't rule a major upset or two.

      At the same time, don't rule out an ugly loss to a bottom feeder. With the exception of Charlotte, the Rockets can still lose to anyone given an off-night for Jeremy and foul trouble for Asik. That's talented youth for you, lots of high highs and low lows.

  7. I'm excited for a much simpler reason than anybody is here:

    Jeremy Lin finally has a high profile teammate that respects his game!

    1. Nah, don't think you are that naive, KHuang. Harden is no different to the likes of Carmelo. I don't think he really respect Lin's game like all the other nba "stars".

      But still what it only matters is what happens on the court. At least Harden looks to be a more willing passer. So whether he respects Lin or not really doesn't mean much. Actually I think all nba players, especially star level players have and need a bit selfishness in them, that includes Lin.

    2. Why do you think Harden does not respect Lin's game?

      He may not be as impressed with Lin's ability as his fans but you can't assume he doesn't respect Lin's basketball skills.

    3. @Cara

      You cannot assume that all "stars" are like Carmelo. They may not fully believe Lin is legitimate due to small sample size but that does not mean they don't respect him. What made you think that other stars don't respect Lin's game. There guys such as Nowitzki, Durant, Nash, Ginobli, Rose, Gay and others that gave praise to Lin.

      When they faced each other, of course, they will play hard against Lin because that is the nature of the game. The most trending players will always be scouted; thus, it seems that they want that player to fail but actually is just challenging them.

      By the way, I have no idea what other players REALLY think of Lin but I'm sure those players respect Lin's "game" since they bothered to scout him. If Lin was just average, I promise you that they wouldn't send multiple defenders against him because he is just average. In reality, they have to respect Lin's driving ability because he can score big time. In my opinion, if the opposing teams are always scouting you then they have to respect your game or presence.

      With that being said, there still is racism but not all stars/players are that shallow. Imagine it like a hazing to superstardom. Lin has to beat the best if Lin wants to be the best or at least be one of the best.

    4. Just from reading Harden's body language and speech inflections, I can tell that Harden isn't dismissive of Lin.

      My instinct is that James Harden is going to get along just fine with Jeremy Lin.

    5. I see no problem between Lin and Harden. I think their style is so much the same. Both are excellent isolation and pick-n-roll players. It is like having two point guards in the starting lineup. Next season when Lin's knee is really healthy, I can expect 20+ ppg fr both players as they become the best backcourt in the NBA. You can expect the Rockets to be among the league leaders in FTs attempts.

      Don't forget that it was Harden who hit the clutch 3 that beat my SPURS in game 5 of the WCF.

      My predictions for Harden:

      21 ppg
      5 rpg
      5 apg

    6. @Cara:

      "Harden is no different to the likes of Carmelo."

      Please explain what you mean. And no, it isn't because Harden is a "star" (because Harden is, you know, a backup and all) so explicitly state what you are really getting at.

    7. Just my gut feeling. Carmelo once said a lot of nice things about Lin too when he first hit the scene.

    8. @Cara

      Harden plays a different way as Carmelo. Carmelo always play isolation basketball while Harden had always played unselfish. It has nothing with the sincerity of their words.

    9. This "Cara" is a clown. Gut feeling? LOL. Come on...

    10. Lin and Harden=definitely a top 5 backcourt duo. Both are humble and chill yet have that confident but not overly cocky swag about them. Both will get along great.

      Can't wait for tomorrows game!

    11. As Lin supporters you cant feel like everyone is out to get him. This is a team sport, Harden knows he needs to build chemistry quickly and there's no greater person for him to do that with then a PG. Lets wait until mid season then we can make some educated asessments based on statistics and facts.

      I personally predict that jlin and harden will have better chemistry then westbrook and harden. Well see...

    12. Ronald McDonald to da xtreme. Everyone in the NBA racist he think.

      Listen and learn, boy/girl who cries wolf and wolf and wolf. Harden know zactly who Jlin b.

      Arco Arena back in the recent day, when our boy straight up clowned Mater Dei. Arta Hi back to back 06 and seven, led by The Beard sent from heaven.

      Cali hoopz big state small world. 4 Paly to take MD, people know how hard dat b. Tyson C Dominguez Don knew zactly who Jlin b

      Circa 2doublezero6, sports junkie Kobe kickin it in da OC, knew zactly who JLin b. 2012, he say..."go back and take a look, and the skill level was probably there from the beginning"

      Dont forget da AAU, Vegas tourney high roller ballin'.

      Cali b-boyz north and south know zactly who Jlin b.


    13. Cara, you don't have to worry about Lin and Harden.

      If you look at Jeremy Lin's career trajectory, you'll see a steady improvement in the QUALITY of Lin's teammates as he ascends the NBA ladder.

      I won't rehash the entirety of Lin's career, but malcontent Kevin Martin was just ejected out of Lin's life.

      James Harden appears to be a good guy. If he's not, Lin will simply be ejected into a BETTER situation.

      Great players create their own destiny. Lin is creating his!

    14. Behind the pretentiousness, @xinkballa, you make an excellent point. Just the fact that that Harden and Lin were All-State at the same time means Harden knows more about Lin than other players. Familiarity breeds acceptance. He knew Lin before Lin was Lin.

      Aside from that, whatever you think a player's initial misgivings are, players joining a team rationalize. You always want to believe your teammates are good. Harden wants to think he can build a winner here. It makes no sense to discount your teammates. You're going to see the best in them.

      From his quotes, Harden definitely understands the strengths of Lin's game. I'm so excited. Lin and Harden are like mirror images of one another, both with underrated athleticism and ultra high IQs. Both are major winners. Both had incredible +/- scores last year. This cold develop into something really amazing.

      Harden isn't Carmelo. Carmelo is a loser. He won a national championship at Syracuse by being carried by a real winner, Gerry McNamara.

    15. It's actually easy to see that Harden is not selfish in putting himself above his teammates.

      Just count how many "he","we","I"/"me" words he used when being asked about how JLin will complete his style of play

      "..How does Jeremy Lin’s game complement your style of play?

      Harden: "We’re similar. He’s a point guard but he can obviously score the ball. He makes tremendous decisions. He can pass the ball and it’s tough to guard him. It’s the same with me: I can score but I’m unselfish as well. We’re going to work off each other and then we’ll find a way to get our bigs and shooters involved."

      So the final count is:
      5 he/him,
      3 we/our,
      3 on me/I (to say he's unselfish like Jeremy)

      It's clear that he sees himself and Jeremy as equals to make plays for others. Consider this. He could have said, "Oh, Jeremy was quick so he can take pressure of me, so I can do.. and then I can do..". You get the idea.

      And he backed it up in the first training to run sprints with the losing team.

  8. I'm surprised nobody's mentioned that Harden and Lin were 1st and 3rd amongst all guards last season in free throw attempts per field goal attempt. They got to the free throw line at a ridiculous rate, something like 14 times per 36 minutes if you sum their numbers from last season. That's already almost 2/3rds of the number of free throw attempts that the average NBA team took per game. I'm really excited to watch these two play together.

  9. I don't know. I just am not sure Harden is a good move. I think Houston overpaid to get Harden. I believe their first choice was definitely to get Dwight Howard or Andrew Bynum. Either will be a better player and a better fit than Harden. It reminded me too much how once Lebron rejected NY, they went into the desperation mode and overpaid to sign Amare and Carmelo. From a Lin fan's standpoint though, it's still lucky that Lin's deal is only 3 years long, so if Houston becomes the next NYK, Lin can get out of the mess quickly. :-)

    1. Think of it from a financial standpoint as opposed to a basketball one, Cara.

      Other teams are willing to pay Harden the max. The Rockets are bidding against those teams. If other teams are willing to pay Harden the max, then the Rockets need to pay the max if they are to keep him.

      When Lin was ordered by the Knicks to test the market, Houston stepped forward. No other team did because they felt Lin was not worth the price (and I don't want to hear any baloney about how the highly paid financial experts of NBA teams were "scared off" by the Knicks saying they would match). Had Houston not stepped forward, Lin would probably be playing another year for the Knicks at a minimum wage because that's the automatic tender granted to restricted free agent players.

      The MARKET has a significant impact on setting a player's value, possibly more than the player's actual on court impact.

    2. Yep - people tend to forget that. Lin had ONE offer sheet to sign. If it wasnt for Houston he would be making a lot less money now. So - whatever is going to happen - Lin will be woking hard to repay Alexander. I am excited and Im looking forward to see JLin and Harden play.


    I am surprised that they let Livingston go instead of Machado. I guess Machado will be suitable when Lin rests and they need a PG to pass to and play with Harden. Among all highly-skilled players that could have come to Rockets, Harden is pretty good fit. He is not egoistical and needs to show people that he can work with all Rockets players and make a run at playoff. I am hoping that Lin will feel more relaxed and no longer feel that he bears the burden, so that this will free up and relax him to pick his spots and be more aggressive.

    1. It could be, eb5attorney, that the Rockets need a point guard for their D-league team.

      Livingston is an established NBA veteran. I don't know what his stance is on going to the D-league, but I can't imagine it being positive.

      Scott Machado is an ideal player to stash in the D-League. He can stay sharp by playing real games and be called up when guys get injured.

      What the Rockets envision for Scott Machado is what the Mavs, Warriors, and Knicks envisioned for Jeremy Lin. The problem is that Lin played like the greatest player ever to set foot in the D-league and forced his way OUT of that minor league!

    2. I think it is all about MONEY. Livingston is ~3 mil vs. Machado's rookie minimum.

      I also agree that Machado and also Royce White need to get minutes in the D league to improve their skills, especially defense. It will be good for Royce too that the air traveling will be less at D league and he can slowly adapt the pace of NBA traveling.

  11. Just for kicks, I watched the old Linsanity clips to contrast this season to last season.

    I was shocked at how much better scouted Lin is this season. Lin was constantly doubled and tripled last season, but that was only when he had the ball. This season, Lin is constantly doubled and tripled OFF the ball.

    Essentially teams are playing a reverse "box and one" against Lin. In a typical box and one, one defender chases the high scorer while the remaining four defenders play zone. But in Lin's case, FOUR defenders are guarding him and one defender is playing zone!

    If you watch Rockets games from last year that had no Lin, the offense looks completely conventional. Goran Dragic and Kyle Lowry are single guarded and are allowed to shoot their cute little midrange jump shots and even penetrate to the rim for their own shots. This year, opponents are blitzing Lin when he crosses halfcourt and converging on him to shut off all the driving lanes.

    Fortunately, Lin is playing for Kevin McHale who knows how to combat the reverse box and one. McHale has Lin penetrating halfway to beat the perimeter double team and draw defenders toward him. If Lin can't get to the basket in his own, he passes off and retreats to the three point line. The Rockets then swing the ball back out to the perimeter against the zone that has collapsed because of Lin's penetration. From there, the defense chases the ball madly because the Rockets have 3 point gunners stationed on the perimeter that have to be guarded. Kevin Martin and now James Harden will FEAST on thise scrambling three point shots!

    Last season, Lin faced the "Jordan Rules" in which every player was guarding him. But not even Michael Jordan was zoned when other teammates had the ball, as that resulted in a warning and then technical free throw in the days of illegal defense. Lin's actually been more capable of handling the "Lin rules" than his coaches, most of whom mistakenly believe that it's Lin who can't break the triple teams as opposed to the triple teams being deviously designed.

    James Harden will be a good player to have beside Lin, but defensive attention is not going to suddenly shift to him and leave Lin to only have to beat a doubleteam. My guess is that teams will continue to focus on Lin while living with Harden's ability to beat people. That's what teams did with Kevin Martin, letting him shoot. I don't see Harden's role being any different, though he's more likely to involve his teammates than the unstoppable Kevin Martin was.

    Lin essentially faced playoff caliber defense this preseason. And despite his erratic shooting, Lin's 6-1 record proves that he's more than capable of beating the "Lin Rules!"

    1. I think Harden is a great addition. Teams are designing special defense for JL because they are forcing other Rockets to step up and beat them. Unfortunately Rocket's major fire power before the trade are the outside shootings which will turn from hot to cold in seconds. Now the opposing team will have to respect Harden's proven abilities to get layups and short range jump shots. I think we will see less doubling of JL on defense.

      I am very excited to see the new Rockets. Godspeed JL and Rockets.

    2. Lin's preseason record is 5-1, not 6-1.

  12. Bleacher Report really dislike Jeremy Lin. Have you read all the negative reporting on JL from this site!!! The latest is the "Why James Harden Will Give Jeremy Lin an Inferiority Complex in 2012-13". Well we know Jeremy will do well, especially under adversities, because Jeremy's power is from the Almighty. Godspeed JL!

    1. It's not just Bleacher Report.

      Pretty much ALL articles written about Harden are trashing Lin as a bust.

      It's typical anti Asian American racism in the media at work. They'll lie and slander about Lin because he's Asian, despite the overwhelming mountain of statistical evidence that Lin is more than living up to his sub-average NBA pay.

    2. Bleacher Reports isn't really a thing. It's brand front for a content mill that uses SEO'd user generated content to flood the search engines and accumulate as many clicks as possible. It's not serious.

    3. Agree with michael. Before I would read these article n fight back, now I realize they are waste of my time! Not worth to read it.

    4. BR follows every Lin-bashing article with a pro-Lin article. I'm with Michael. BR clearly has an ulterior motive in milking both sides of the Lin debate. It's like political donors that pour money into both the Dems and GOP. Either way the donors and their clients win.

  13. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  14. 90 percent of these writers don't even know what they're talking about, They simply repeat what other sources like Stephen A. Smith were saying. Hard to find any original unbiased journalism in sports. Did they even watch these games?

  15. My take:

    I love the Harden move because Harden strikes me as a perfect "wing man" or "side kick" guy. He is not a leader, but can be a very good follower. Not the best athlete in the world, but he can mitigate that by staying in peak condition and becoming a skilled student of the game (the idea that you have to be this super elite athlete to be a superior NBA player is myth).

    Michael Jordan had Scottie Pippen. Magic Johnson had James Worthy. Shaq had Dwayne Wade (and then LeBron had Dwayne Wade). Harden can get exactly what he needs out of this Rockets situation: a max deal and a chance to start without having to be the #1 guy or leader of the team, which will be Lin.

    Now all they need is the third piece, preferably a big man, a PF. And as the Rockets GM stated, the team does have enough money for another max contract ...

    1. I don't get this insistence why Lin "has to be" the leader of Rockets. Harden is better known and arguably is more respected by other Rockets players and NBA players. Let's give it some time before we call Lin or wish him to be an undisputed leader of Rockets. I rather Lin play solid or better throughout this season and continue to improve.

    2. Let me delete "better known", since Lin is arguable "better known" in the world.

    3. He is the point guard. Who better to be the leader?

    4. Not saying a PG should not or cannot be a leader. But leadership cannot be forced, so whoever is the consensus leader (or leaders) in Rockets is good enough for me.

  16. @Cara

    I feel you are too paranoid and too negative of the Harden trade. Their style fits each other perfectly if you ask me.

    Is Harden a superstar? we don't know yet but he's definitely capable of creating shots for himself and for others efficiently. Lin couldn't ask for a better shooting guard. He'll definitely be relieved of a lot of pressure.

    I suspect you are still bitter about trading Lamb. Let us assume Lamb will be good as many here (not me) expects. How long do you think he'll become an all-star player if it ever occurs? At least 3-4 years probably. Do you think the Rockets will wait that long to develop Lamb. Their key players such as Parsons, Lin, and Asik would probably be free agents by then. So, the supposed chemistry will probably disrupted if one of those key players are not resigned.

    Now, with Harden, who is more proven and definitely a sure thing, the rockets can build success probably 2-3 years faster compared to developing the unproven Lamb.

    What would you choose: a high risk- high reward (Lamb) or a low risk - high reward (Harden)? Any person would pick the sure thing.

    By the way, Carmelo's style of play does not really work for any other star unless he concedes like during in the olympics. On the other hand, Harden had been playing as the third option for 3 years. He even played off the bench. Why in the world will he have an ego-problem with Lin? It just does not make any sense to me. Harden is a winner period. He is about winning.

    You also said that Dwight and Bynum would have been better fit for Lin. I totally disagree. Now, you are barking at the wrong tree. You should worry about Howard or Bynum not respecting Lin's game rather than Harden. You do know that Dwight is a locker room cancer. Bynum does not show up in the playoffs and is obviously injury-prone. Howard will demand the ball so much from Lin just the way Carmelo does. Dwight is another Beta male according to KHuang's classification. Swight will concede to the likes of Kobe and Nash but would never concede to Lin.

    Bottomline, you are worrying too much and they haven't even played a single game together yet.

    1. By the way, I'm not here to fight with you;

      I just feel you're worried too much

    2. I totally agree that there is a greater chance of Bynum and Howard disrespecting Lin than Harden. Harden seems like a relatively respectful fellow. Also, if Lin plays well throughout one entire season, he will get more respect. I think people respect the fact he's getting paid a decent NBA money.

  17. Jlin is a lucky guy. Things have really fallen in place for him. This Houston team will be right up there with the OKC squad next year challenging for West Coast supremacy, after Morey does more tweaking to the roster. As the Lakers and Spurs finally fall apart from old age, there's gonna be a Houston/OKC battle for years to come.

    Like the posts above said so well, you cannot discount that Harden KNOWS Lin or heard and seen him back in the day from both being from CALI and playing in the CALI boys bball circuit at the highest levels. You cannot discount that Harden understands where Lin comes from and Harden understands there are Asian Americans in California who play ball, some who play decently like Lin. Seriously Harden grew up around enough Asians and other races being from So Cal that it helps big time with his perceptions about things including Lin and his rabid domestic and foreign fan base.

    Aside from their games meshing well based on style, this is huge. Harden understands Lin is not some freak or fluke from China, as CP3 mistakenly inferred over the summer during the Olympics while Carmelo sat next to him. One less small minded Baltimore Carmelo or Ohio Kmart or racist town Carolina Felton/CP3 for Lin to worry about dealing with. It'll lead to better chemistry for the team and wins down the road.

    1. With all due respect, Houston "right up there with OKC"? In Durant, you have arguably THE best NBA player (or second best NBA player at least), along with Westwood and Ibaka who is near the all-star level. Houston needs at least another very good player to compete with OKC.

    2. Cara is right. Houston needs a PF, and a good one, before they can challenge OKC. OKC got a steal in the draft, the kid from Baylor who is 7 feet tall and has SF skills. Perry Jones III is is name I think. (Wanted my hometown team to get him but they blew it as usual.) It will take him a couple of years to fill out his body and get used to NBA post play, but he is the type of player that Houston needs to be on the lookout for.

    3. @eb5attorney,

      Presumably he's assuming Houston will pick up a Josh Smith or what-have-you by next season. That is a reasonable prediction. You need to be a little less judgmental about peoples' predictions. English does not have fine-grained grammar for expressing continuous differences in probability estimates and it gets pretty tedious to qualify every damn thing you say. Folks shouldn't have to spell out everything for you to avoid your wrath. It's not a secret that Houston has room for another max player under its cap. And if a fan prediction has an extra dash of hope in it, that's OK, too.

    4. when i said next year I meant next season. And MT is right - I am assuming Morey adds another quality name player and adds bench support by summer 2013's end. There's no way this current Houston team can win a championship, though I think they can make people scared of playing them and surprise a couple teams in the playoffs if all goes right.

      I think Unknown underestimates T Jones' value while hyping PJ III, who I think is great ass well. T Jones was like a #1 blue chip recruit when he was in high school. He is just doing what he did in high school in the nba pre-season since he is no longer shackled by Coach Calipari in the name of team wins. When I saw his HS youtube clips, I was blown away. TJ may not be elite, but he'll at least be as effective a pro as a more physical Lamar Odom type guy with some post moves.

      You also forget Dmo and White, who I believe will come out of nowhere once he gets use to his bus routine when everyone gives up on him because he can fit with well rounded players like Jlin and Harden and Parsons and even Asik who passes to create offensive havoc and fast ball movement. One of these 3 rookie forwards will end up being something, even if no more than a Darrell Authur type, which is what T Jones kind of is already.

  18. Don't forget the games at Golden State and LA Lakers. Lin hasn't made his west coast appearances yet since Linsanity. There's a possibility there might be more Lin fans at Golden State than anywhere else.

  19. Lin-Harden > Curry-Ellis > Marbury-Francis

  20. Some one in the top say jlin should say something about hurricane sandy, he actually did on fb. Wonder if he read your comments here then...:)

  21. I like the new "1,2,3 Family" chants at the huddle.

    Never underestimate a group of talented young players led by two of the best NBA playmakers who are out to prove something!

    Jason Friedman ‏@RocketsJCF
    Rockets change things up at end of practice today, breaking with "1,2,3 Family."

  22. I would like to make it clear that I respect Lin, and it's not often that I respect an athlete for more than their playing ability in their particular sport. Do not let media fool you; there are a lot of sports fans who respect Lin and want to see him do well. I worked in the media field briefly, and believe me their sole aim is to create controversy and make things exciting to draw in more viewers, so advertisers will feel better about spending money advertising. This is one reason I purposely chose to not go into the journalism field, beside the fact that I don't think was all that good in journalism -- come to think of it, I am not all that great in any area. Ha, ha.

    1. Well, you just made a great point about media, eb5attorney! So that's one thing you did great today :D

      They do prioritize money over writing good, honest journalism so if it means exaggeration, bending the truth, pure speculation to get more people to click, they will gladly do it.

      We just have to be on guard to do fact-checks and not get riled up by these provocateurs!

  23. Below is an improved version of my response to Harden's quote about playing with Lin that Psalms234 provided in the last thread.

    PART I:

    How does James Harden view his new backcourt partner, Lin? Harden responded:

    *** How does Jeremy Lin’s game complement your style of play?

    Harden: We’re similar. He’s a point guard but he can obviously score the ball. He makes tremendous decisions. He can pass the ball and it’s tough to guard him. It’s the same with me: I can score but I’m unselfish as well. We’re going to work off each other and then we’ll find a way to get our bigs and shooters involved.

    I think it’s going to be great. You saw what he did last year when he had that great run and he’s capable of a lot more. So we’ll sit down and talk and figure things out and how to make the most of each other. ***

    This statement by Harden was the piece in the Harden trade I was looking for to project Harden's beneficial impact on Lin.

    On paper, Harden's game should enhance Lin's game. Harden is the next-generation Ginobili, meaning he combines basketball smarts and an all-around floor game with point ability, creative breakdown ability, and scoring and shooting ability. His experience playing with Russell Westbrook, a college combo guard converted to NBA PG like Lin, should help him adjust quickly to Lin. The Ginobili-Parker comparison is also apt.

    I'll highlight three ways Harden should make Lin better. One, the most important goal for Lin this season is to log a full season, and Harden will allow Lin to pace himself and save wear and tear. Two, Lin's streaky shooting is less of a concern with Harden's superior shooting ability. Three, Harden will allow Lin the option of playing off the ball. If Lin struggles running the Rockets half-court offense against a top NBA defense, as happened at times last season with the Knicks, Lin can stay on the floor while Harden steps into the point role. When the Knicks signed Jason Kidd, I looked forward to pairing Lin with a cross-matching big point guard so that Lin could use his strengths as an off-the-ball, creative scoring and playmaking combo guard - a better version of 2011 Finals Heat-killer JJ Barea. Lin excelled in that role at Harvard. I believe Lin would be a devastating playmaker from the weak side initiating his offense (including secondary pick and rolls) against rotating defenders and mismatches. Of course, Kidd is on his last NBA legs and only scores as an outlet 3-point shooter, so it would have been a limited option for the Knicks. But coming to the Rockets, playing Lin off the ball was no option because Lin would be forced to dominate the ball again at PG. Now with Harden sharing the backcourt with Lin, the big guard with point ability will allow the Rockets to better exploit Lin's versatility by playing him on or off the ball. Lin's points and assists should bump up as a result.

    My concern with Harden was that the ambitious, hungry, former 3rd guard would look to make his NBA rep as a front-line starter with a Kobe-esque approach that the ball belonged to him, and his new teammates, especially Lin, must co-exist with Harden on his terms. The Harden statement shows that he is joining the Rockets with the right attitude and views Lin as a complementary partner, not a competitor. I like it.

    (Continued ...)

    1. PART II:

      In terms of the team leader question, the NBA is not like the NFL, where the starting quarterback must always be the undisputed alpha male for the team to function. NBA teams need more than 1 star playmaker/scorer. As Harden should understand from playing with the Thunder, dynamic duos, and preferably big threes or even fantastic fours, are the baseline necessity to contend for the NBA championship. With the Knicks, the versatile Lin had the potential to form one of the best G/F combos in the NBA with the versatile Carmelo Anthony. Indeed, at the point Lin was lost to injury, the two players under Woodson were showing incipient signs of a legit dynamic duo. But by leaving the Knicks for the Rockets, Lin was going to be stuck as his team's lone star playmaker/scorer - good for Lin's personal stats, perhaps, but bad for team wins and the wear-and-tear load on him. Now the Rockets can stretch out defenses with Lin playing off Harden and vice versa. In principle, I still prefer a G/F combo like Lin/Anthony over a G/G combo, but a big/small-guard dynamic duo can work well, too, when both guards can run the point, make plays, and create scores.

      Finally, nothing secures an athlete's reputation like a track record of clutch, even when the athlete has flaws in his game. When Kidd joined the Knicks, he emphasized that games are mostly won or lost in the last 5 minutes (ie, end of regulation or the full over-time), which is the only stage of the game the aged Kidd expected to play. Closing a game in clutch fashion is a Lin specialty, and depending on how much ability Kidd has left, a Kidd-Lin combo would have been effective at the end of games. Harden, based on his track record with the Thunder, should help Lin close games, too. One, while Harden took his share of clutch shots with the Thunder, he smoothly worked with Kevin Durant and Westbrook so that Harden's star teammates excelled in clutch situations. Two, Harden struggled to score in the clutch when his star teammates were contained in the Finals, which may make him more inclined to set up Lin for game-winning shots. If Lin game winners become a regular highlight on ESPN, his skeptics will have little to say, even if Lin's shooting remains streaky and his turnovers remain relatively high.

      Harden sounds like his mindset is in the right place to play with Lin, which means the two smart, unselfish, multi-talented, hungry young guards should be a joy to watch playing together. Paired with Harden, Lin is now better positioned to sustain his play over a full season, which is his main goal for this season. But more than that, Lin can win with Harden. The Rockets have a competitive core of versatile guards with Lin, Harden, and Delfino. The team just needs one or two of the young bigs to step up and fill the offensive hole left in the frontcourt by the amnestied, reliable Luis Scola.

    2. Hi Eric! Welcome back after a long hiatus! We miss your thoughtful contribution, especially KHuang :D

    3. This comment has been removed by the author.


    4. I concur that the greatest upside of Harden and Lin pairing as great playmakers is they will spur each other's development because they will learn from each other and cover the weaknesses.

      I just had a thought that OKC is actually the big loser in this trade in 2-3 years . Think about it in terms of playmaking abilities and team knowledge.

      As a creative playmaker leading the highest +/- per game in OKC (more to come on this), Harden knows Durant's and Westbrook's strength and weaknesses very well. When the Rockets compete with the Thunder in a few years for the West championship, who do you think will have the advantage to exploit the other team's weaknesses?

      OKC really dropped the ball on this one. No wonder Morey felt like he hit the lottery after calling Presti multiple times in the past few months. Persistence and perseverance paid off!

    5. Good analysis. He talks good so far; we will see how things work out soon.

    6. The OKC lost their best playmaker. That is underrated if you ask me. The Thunder becomes an isolation team when Harden isn't in the floor. That is probably Harden's greatest value: playmaking ability.

      This was a hasty decision by OKC. Harden specifically said that he wants to think for a few days about the initial offer but OKC did give only an hour to think. After that, they immediately traded him so hastily.

      I guarantee the Thunder will not win the Championship this year. They may be great but no way they are beating the Lakers and the Spurs without the playmaking ability of Harden.

      To explain his struggles against Miami, there are two reasons for it. One, many of his misses are open shots so there was nothing he could do about it. Second, he was asked by Brooks to guard Lebron many times in the post. Surely, he must have been more fatigued than before.

      This backcourt can do a lot of damage especially when Lin's knee is 100%. They would crush the opposing backcourts every game.

      I expect them to ABUSE the Pistons' backcourt.

      Rockets by 20

    7. There's only thing that I disagree with in Eric's analysis (and I'm glad he came back in a previous post).

      No matter what team ends up on, Lin will be defended like a primary threat whether he has the ball or not.

      Pairing Lin with Kidd EXACERBATES that problem since Kidd no longer has to be guarded.

      Even though I've been violently critical of Carmelo Anthony's tanking, I do agree that he played well alongside Lin. But NY still had no proven perimeter scorer beside Lin to siphon off pressure. JR Smith and Ronnie Brewer cannot score enough to make teams pay for loading up on Lin.

      Before we get ahead of ourselves with Harden, let's remember that the Rockets were projected to be a 30 win team. So it's nice to have high expectations for Lin's team for once!

    8. Thanks, Psalm234. Thank your find of Harden's quote on Lin for pulling me out of lurker mode.

      Adding Harden is a big deal for Lin. As you may recall, I'm one of the few Lin fans who believed Lin and the Knicks were a good fit for each other based on the current stage of Lin's career and the Knicks' team needs.

      (I just listened on WFAN to Mike Francesca run through his concerns about the Knicks - brittle age, perimeter creative scoring needed especially for the post-season, and backcourt stability (JR Smith!). Lin would have filled each team need. The Knicks will make the play-offs this season without Lin, but they will miss Lin in the long run. I'm a fan of Felton and wish Lin could have played with him, but the Knicks need the type of combo guard that Lin represents more than the type of point guard that Felton represents. The Knicks should gamble on Delonte West, even with West's psychiatric issues.)

      Specifically in relation to Harden, I'm one of the few Lin fans who believed Lin and Anthony would help each other. Anthony has played with Iverson, Miller, and Billups - he's no stranger to meshing with a point guard. Anthony has said he's uncomfortable running the offense and wants a point guard to distribute the ball (to him). Anthony doesn't shoot more (about 20 FGA per) than other top NBA scorers, and like other top NBA scorers, Anthony needs an outlet scorer to relieve defensive pressure on him. That role would have been Lin's. In basketball terms, the jagged fit on the Knicks was Stoudemire with Anthony, not Lin with Anthony. A core of Lin/Anthony/Chandler with 2 [fill in the role] specialists would have worked well.

      By moving from the Knicks to the Rockets, Lin lost the complementary G/F partnership he could have developed with Anthony. That worried me: point guards, especially, need and seek out star-level partners. A PG's success, more than any other position, is judged by his relationship to teammate and team success. While the Rockets are a great opportunity for Lin to establish his NBA career regardless, missing a star-level teammate to spread the load raised Lin's risk for failure, moreso coming back from a wear-and-tear knee injury that apparently has taken longer than expected to heal.

      Enter Harden to my relief. While I still believe Anthony would have been a better partner for Lin, Harden at least is qualified to take Anthony's place as Lin's complementary, star-level partner. And that makes me feel better about Lin's prospects for a successful, healthy season.

    9. KHuang,

      Anthony to attract the defense, Kidd at the point to allow Lin to play off the ball. Of course, if Kidd can't hit 3s well enough anymore to keep defenses honest, then defenses could still have defended both Anthony and Lin. Which is why Woodson has to carefully parcel out Kidd's minutes so Kidd can be a viable threat to hit his shots at the end of games.

      Anthony has it over Harden that Anthony is a forward to Lin's guard in terms of complementary roles and floor balance. But Harden has it over Anthony + Kidd that Harden can attract the defense AND play point so Lin can play off the ball, all in one package. I can accept that trade-off.

    10. Psalm234,

      Yep, the Thunder trade-off isn't just Harden for Martin but Harden for Martin and Maynor. If I recall correctly, Maynor is a decent back-up PG, but no game-changer. I don't believe in Westbrook as a PG and, in that aspect, I believe the Thunder will miss Harden and Harden will find it easier to play with Lin than with Westbrook.

      Bill Simmons likes to say that in NBA trades, 4 quarters does not equal 1 dollar. Maynor + Martin < Harden.

    11. Playing Kidd with Lin at SG means that the Knicks would be easily zoned off.

      Lin and Anthony could easily be zoned off, especially since Stoudemire and Anthony clog each other in the midrange. Defenses would sag away from Stoudemire, Chandler, and Kidd to essentially have the Knicks playing 2 on 5 in your scheme.

      Were Woodson a motion coach, he'd send players scrambling TO the ball instead of AWAY from it. Woodson is rightfully criticized as a tactician because his teams are reliant solely on single superstar creativity. This makes the Knicks easily guardable and creates constant internal chemistry problems that are solved only by having "veterans" that are so old and incapable of producing that they don't need the ball while Anthony goes to work.

      Lin is playing in a balanced offense. Replacing Kevin Martin with James Harden only helps that balanced offense. Though McHale is actually a low post isolation coach, his coaching staff as appointed by Rockets owner Les Alexander had instituted a nice motion offense that still provides room for individual scoring attempts. Having Lin on one side and Harden on the other has completely shored up the guard positions.

      To me, a scoring small forward who can create off the dribble would be a great addition to this Rockets team. I don't know who's becoming available, but a Danny Granger or Rudy Gay type is what I think the Rockets need.

    12. As great as Kidd is as a smart decision-maker and ball-mover, I agree playing Kidd with Lin only works if Kidd can still hit 3s consistently, which he did well during the Mavs championship, but worse last year - Dirk, Kidd, Barea :: Anthony, Kidd, Lin. In any case, the Kidd-Lin combo would only have been used situationally. Most of the time, Lin would have been the PG. I also agree the root cause of the Knicks' dysfunction on offense is the bad Anthony/Stoudamire match.

      As far as going to the ball, Woodson had Lin and Anthony playing on the same side of the floor and playing off each other (pick and rolls, pass and cuts) before Lin got hurt. But that strategy still allows the defense to pack the strong side. Besides the burgeoning Lin/Anthony 2-man game, playing Kidd (must shoot 3s) with Anthony on the strong side and Lin on the weak side would have stretched the defense. I agree another shooter on the floor - eg, JR Smith, Novak - would have been needed. Crisp Anthony outlet passes and Kidd whipping the ball around in that line-up would have given Lin all the space he needed to find gaps in the defense.

      Still, any Knicks strategy must solve the puzzle of how to fit Stoudemire with Anthony. Perhaps, Stoudemire's injury can be the answer. If the Knicks didn't solve the Anthony/Stoudemire puzzle, I thought the dysfunction on offense would have worked in Lin's favor anyway. With the frontcourt and their defenders bumping into each other, the ball would have returned to Lin on the perimeter for bail-out shots and hero ball. Not good for the team, but good for Lin and right in his wheelhouse.

      As far as the Rockets SF, I guess we'll find out whether Chandler Parsons is ready to step up his game. I imagine Harden and Delfino will be absorbing minutes at the 3, which would pull Douglas and/or Cook, perhaps even Machado, into the rotation at the 1 and 2. I expect Lin, Harden, and Delfino will play together a lot. I'm not too worried about the Rockets in the backcourt and on the wing. Their frontcourt is the big question mark.

    13. There are no team based solutions for the problem between Anthony and Stoudemire.

      Stoudemire plays like a rim attacking small forward while Carmelo Anthony plays like a post up power forward. Neither player moves well without the ball.

      Basically, both those guys have to learn how to PLAY. Stoudemire needs to expand his post up game while Anthony needs to learn to move without the basketball.

      Since that's not going to happen at this point in the careers, the Knicks will simply have to isolate one player on one side of the court with the ball in Woodson's baby ball scheme. Woodson can continue to manage the minutes to keep one of those two in the game for all 48 minutes.

    14. Yep. Pretty much. The Rockets will move the ball better as a team than the Knicks will this season. (The Knicks will win more due to better defense.) I'm looking forward to watching Lin show off his off-the-ball skills in the Rockets' flowing offense that were harder to show off with his ball-dominant role in D'Antoni's offense and the conservative plays in Woodson's offense.

      The way for the Knicks to boost offense is the 2-man game, like Woodson was just starting to put in place for Anthony and Lin. Both Stoudemire and Anthony have played well in their careers with scoring point guards.

      Anthony gets a bad rap for the iso stuff, but his style only makes him a typical top NBA scorer. To me, Anthony and Dirk Nowitzki's games are interchangeable. Recent NBA history says a team can win it all by flanking a Nowitzki type (ie, Anthony) with a Tyson Chandler type (ie, Tyson Chandler), a Kidd type (downgrade for older Kidd), a Barea type (upgrade for Lin), and a Marion type. Play tough defense (ie, Woodson), limit the turnovers, and score enough points. Problem is, Stoudemire isn't a Marion type. And the Knicks don't have Lin anymore to provide the necessary complementary perimeter scorer for the mid-range scoring Anthony/Dirk.

      The Knicks will return to the play-offs this season on the strength of Woodson's defense and the conservative offense featuring Anthony. If they can get a 6 seed or better - and they should in this season's East - the Knicks have a good shot of winning into the 2nd round. But beyond that, the Knicks needed Lin's added playmaking, scoring, and clutch dimensions to have a shot of making it out of the 2nd round (Celtics, Heat).

  24. My predictions now, taking into account that Harden will draw more coverage from opponents, is that Lin will average this season:

    15 ppg from 12 ppg
    7.5 assists per game
    2.5 steals per game
    3 TOs per game

    I do agree in general that Harden's joining has made it "easier" for Lin, although Lin's play will determine how far Rockets will go.

  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

  26. Ty Lawson just signed a 4 year $48 million extension.

    Do you think an NBA player will call his contract "ridiculous"?

    1. I just read also.

      Way too much if you ask me. He's getting paid 12 mil a year. Rondo is being paid 11 million a year.

      Lawson is a terrific shooter, a decent passer, good athleticism, very fast, ok finisher, average defender, small size.

      Should be paid 35-40 mil

    2. Wednesday, November 7, next week. Mark it down.

      Denver at Houston.

      Let's see if the $12 million dollar man can outplay the $5 million dollar man ($8 million against the cap).

    3. Lin should post him up. He has so much size advantage over Lawson. He might not have the quickness to get by Lawson but Lawson isn't really the best defender.

    4. I think Lin might be able to abuse Lawson like he did Darren Collison, since Lawson is even smaller than Collison.

      Not necessarily with post ups, just running him off picks, bumping him off, getting physical with him, and dropping in midrange jumpers on his head. Just like he did to Collison.

    5. I think it's a fair deal. I like Denver's balanced approach way better than Morey's "superstar model",

    6. Lin is a very tough cover for opposing point guards.

      He's quick enough to beat any of them off the dribble. Yet he's also big enough to shoot over them and take their hits without even flinching. On defense, Lin shadows guys with his quickness and elevates for blocked shots.

      Were Lin not an Asian guy, people would be raving about his athleticism. The way people talk about Ricky Rubio on defense and the way people talk about Kyrie Irving on offense is the way people ought to be talking about Lin.

      At least we on this website don't have the anti Asian sunglasses on and can see Lin as he is: the most physically intimidating young point guard in the NBA.

    7. yeah lets have some random player bring up his flaws and how an opposing point guard is better than him.

      Carmelo Anthony: are you kidding me??

      announcers: he's kinda small but... (he actually is this time!)

    8. If Ty Lawson had signed his contract after playing 25 games, NBA players would have.

  27. The new season will beginn soon. Things are getting serious. Who here besides me thinks JLin should grow a beard and get a tatoo?

  28. Bad news, Rockets don't exercise contract option for Cole Aldrich. Looks like they won't have a back up Center for the foreseeable future.
    I'm going to wince every time Omer Asik gets into foul trouble.

  29. Now the season is starting : all i ask you is a moment of pray for jeremy. Could this season be successfull and could his efforts on court be an inspiration for other people.

    To all who believe pray that the unbelievers would know jesus thru jeremy.

    My thoughts go to michelle too ... Hi if you're reading ....


    1. amen, bro.

      While some of us here might not be Christians, Taiwanese, or Chinese but I know all of us admire JLin to be an authentic person and role model whose actions speak louder than his public faith.

      IMHO I believe God has even greater plans to use Jeremy to bless his teammates and others. I pray that God's name will look good when JLin and his teammates are 100% healthy and bring Houston to 2nd round of playoff :D God willing it will happen!

    2. Yes. A healthy Jeremy all the way!!!!

    3. I pray…
      When I was looking for a job, my friend Alice said to me, “I will pray for you.” I was so touched by her words and curiously asked her how Jesus works the way out. Alice answered “I don’t know and not all prayers will be answered immediately, Jesus has his own schedule.” After I struggled for a while, I landed a wonderful job at a big company. I assumed that was God’s work to answer Alice’s prayer.

      After Jeremy Lin emerged in New York and created ‘Linsanity”, I followed his news closely. I also got a chance to observe American society from different angles. In my viewpoint, Jeremy’s story has many positive impacts, but it also stirs negative reactions in the medias and with a few other people. For some unknown reason, some people just want nothing but to have Jeremy fail. They call themselves “analysts” like Steven. A.Smith or “pure Knick’s fans”.

      I really hope Jeremy can be successful, not only for being a good basketball player but also becoming a great example for thousands of other young people.

      Lin is on Rockets' team now. He had a couple preseason games. Comparing those games with Linsantiy time’s one, I was a little disappointed for his playing. I am worried about Jeremy and don’t want him to become a “flash in a pan” Gradually I felt pain for watching the games and avoided reading Jeremy’s news before my bed time. Feeling hopeless, I remembered what Alice did to me. “I will pray for you.”

      Following Alice steps, I will pray for Jeremy and let God takes care of this. God, you did once for me; please help Jeremy and don’t let him fail.

    4. Prayer warriors all over the globe on the rise for JLin!

    5. Read my above post, My2Cents.

      Jeremy Lin was defended MUCH HARDER this preseason than he was during Linsanity. Unlike Linsanity where Jeremy Lin was triple teamed "only" when he had the ball, this preseason Jeremy Lin has been triple teamed OFF the ball.

      You needn't worry about Lin being a "flash in the pan". He's got too much game for that to happen, even if James Harden goes down due to injury. If there's one player in the league who WON'T be a "flash in the pan", it's Lin!

    6. @Spotless mind:

      The only difference between believers (christians) and non believers is faith - faith in one god - one of many thousands of gods that humans have worshipped in the history of mankind.

      I have no problem with people of faith (since Im catholic) but please dont make it sound as if non believers were lesser people and people of faith were better people. Atheist dont ask you to give up your faith. Why would you want to convert or recruit atheists? You think you get a better seat in haven for it? Why do atheist need to know Jesus thru JLin? Some people would find that offensive!

      If someone would pray for you to open your eyes and finally acknowledge Zeus or people would criticise you for not believing in Thor, you would not like that either - because when it comes to these gods youre an atheist, too. Atheists as we know only go one god further...


      As catholic I cant recall any teaching that says god or his son worked like Santa Clause. There is no special order, no special delivery, no schedule nor special protection. You may want to attribute anything good in your life to god because you think praising god makes everything even better for you - but you are being cruel by doing so.

      Either that or you claim that god for some reason prefers to help you but not others who have bigger problems - like the twins I know who prayed that their brother would find a bone marow donor, or the mother who prayed her son would come out of coma after drowning in water that was only one foot deep, or the siblings who prayed their father would find a donor liver... All of these prayers were unanswered - all those wishes were unfullfilled...

      Also - Ive just read about the rohingya who where massacred by buddhists. Dont you think those people have prayed that god may protect them and their families before they were killed or burnt alive? They are muslims - they are praying to the same god christians and jews pray to.

      Where was Jesus when their babies were slaughtered? Where was god when the refugees were attacked, raped and tortured? Where was Jesus when they were attacked on open sea trying to flee to another country? Where were your prayers when those people watched each other drown, starve or die of thirst?

      Look to austria - read about the girl who was incarcerated and raped by her own father over years. Read about the second world war, about people who were forced to eat the dead bodies of their own children. Read about the children who didnt die of the poisonous gas in the death camps and were therefor burnt alive. Were was Jesus when it happened? Was he busy giving people jobs?

      If god created us he would also be the one who gave us purpose by giving us free will. If thats true - whatever happens on earth would be a result of people who practice their free will - whether its good or bad. You found a job because some time in your life you qualified for it and you got it because someone was willing to hire. Linsanity would be a result of peoples free will - JLins choice to play bball, Dantonis choice to let JLin play. God may have created us but he doesnt give jobs and he doesnt manipulate bball games.

      If you give god credit for your job, you have to blame god for bad things that happen to people as well. And when I say bad - I actually mean crual and evil things. You would have to say that god constantly plans the cruel deaths of people... you sure you wanna do that?

    7. @willydilly:

      I don't see how Spotless mind's post was making it seem like non believers were lesser people. He only wished that unbelievers would know Jesus through Jeremy. That is only consistent with what he believes. Buddhists wish people would know enlightenment, Muslims wish people would know Mohammed, Atheists wish people would know no god, Christians wish people would know Jesus. What's wrong with that? In fact it is your post that puts people down. Perhaps Spotless mind had people like you in mind when he wrote his post, that you would find peace.

    8. @willydilly:
      I love to see the positive posts and avoid reviewing the negative one. As I read too many negative one, I felt I needed to have a peaceful mind at that moment for myself.
      When we feel we need help, we turn to someone like a child turning to his/her parents. I am not here to discuss religion, but pure hope Lin to be successful.

  30. You know what I'd like to see? I want to see 6-8 steals a game. That will excite me. I want to see "hot potatoes" basketball, the ball passed around so much that it gets the defenses exhausted trying to chase the open man. That will excite me. I wanna see bravado and emotion coming out of jlin like during the linsanity period. So far he seems too low key. I wanna see Harden and Jlin psyche up the whole team. I wanna see youthful enthusiasm. Hope that mchale won't dampen it. i wanna see fullcourt presses for a stretch at critical points every quarter of every game. To me full court presses are like two minute drills in football. They don't use it enough, but youth will allow them to do that. Above all, I wanna see Lin having fun this season. He seems to be still nolstagic with New York

    1. There are good basketball reasons why full court presses and "hot potatoes" passing are considered "risky" at the NBA level.

      Teams that employ the full court press often get shredded defensively because at the NBA level, all 5 players are so skilled that they can break the press whenever they want. Plus, using the press wears the pressing team out early in games. Pro teams that use the press have traditionally been unable to perform in the 4th quarter due to fatigue caused by the press.

      Opponents are playing Lin in a 4 man zone that I described above as a "reverse box and one". Lin's is covered by one man, but the remaining players are stepping into Lin's passing and dribble lanes when Lin is WITHOUT the basketball. When Lin receives the ball, opponents have already stationed themselves in the passing and driving lanes ready to steal his passes or block his way to the rim. But Lin's SO GOOD that he penetrates all the way anyway or collapses the defense around him off his penetration before kicking the ball out to 3 point land for your "hot potatoes" basketball. No Lin penetration, no "hot potatoes".

      6-8 steals a game is hard. ztrta pointed out that opponents are now doubling Lin on DEFENSE, and ztrta is right. Because Lin is stealing the ball and stopping dribble penetration, opposing offensive players are trying to screen Lin off the action as opposed to seeking their own shots.

      With all the double and triple teaming Lin is facing, he is likely too mentally preoccupied with identifying the best openings that appear almost at random on the court and thus is too mentally focused to do "bravado and emotion". Lin's "youthful enthusiasm" is secondary to having the right mental focus and clarity to make the right play at the right time.

  31. Jeff Green

    23 minutes
    3 points, 0/4 shooting
    3 rebounds
    0 assists
    1 turnover
    1 steal

    Signed a 4 year, $36 million deal this summer

    Will NBA players say his contract is "ridiculous"?

    1. Why not take a look at Jeff Green for more than one night shall we?

      315 career games. 263 career starts. 13.9 ppg and 5.5 rpg career average, and 15-16 ppg and 6+ rpg avg when he starts. Yes, that generally does get you $36 million in the NBA.

      Meanwhile, 25 games generally does not. It never had before Jeremy Lin. And it is safe to say that no one else is ever going to get a contract like that after 25 starts - and barely playing at all before then - either.

      Lots of guys had to put in a lot more time in NBA games before they got their big contracts than Lin did, and those guys are going to be jealous and resentful. Look, you can either let that reality eat at you and resent it forever, but that doesn't change the reality.

    2. You left out the part where Lin makes less than Jeff Green.

      And you're right, it's likely no one will get a contract like that after 25 games, because what he did was unprecedented. He put up record numbers. What he did was a rarity.

      Yet, Jeff Green makes more. Thanks for playing.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.