Thursday, November 8, 2012

Lots to Learn

Rockets 86
Nuggets 93


6 pts
5 rebs
6 asts
6 stls
2 tov
-1 +/-

I just finished watching the game on DVR. The game didn't seem so bad after reading all of the game time comments here. The biggest reason for the loss was no defensive intensity to start the game and just a bad 3 point shooting night all around. Almost all of the misses (2-13) by Parsons, Harden, and Lin were wide open shots.

Harden actually looked for Jeremy quite a bit. I'm not worried at all about their chemistry. This is a young team that just needs some time together. They have a lot to learn and the only way that happens is through game experience and some tough losses. So, lets have some patience and don't panic just yet.

Jeremy really turned up the d in the 2nd half and ended up with 6 steals (now averaging 3.25 spg, 2nd in the NBA). His defense on one possession when he switched on to the 7 foot Galanari was amazing.

Jeremy's shot looked fine to me. He still seems a little hesitant but at least he's letting the 3's fly. He is shooting 93% from the line. That tells me his stroke is fine. He just needs to keep shooting.

My bigger concern is Jeremy not getting to the line. This is probably a combination of his injury (not having full explosiveness around the rim) and trying not to be as reckless to cut down on his turnovers. Not sure this is such a good thing. I was never too worried about his high turnover rate last season. Once he regains most of his explosiveness, I bet you'll see him being much more aggressive going to the basket.


  1. It is clear that when you have an open 3 point shot, you have to take it, but it is just strange how the Rockets' coach is playing Jeremy. There are many point guard in the league are not good at catch and shoot, especially from 3 point line: Rondo, Parker, CP3, Nash, etc. Even Nash, who has solid FG% from 3, is shooting from motion or from some plays where he just happen to ends up position at the 3 point line.

    Rockets' coach is asking Jeremy to camp out at 3 point line to catch and shoot, which is an atypical usage of a point guard.

    1. yeah, maybe they are trying to get Lin out of the "slump" but letting him camp there trying to catch and shoot, shooting his way out of it but it ain't working lol. The way I see it its the wrong approach (assuming...). Shooting is just one of the facets of a player/game. Everything needs to click, like all the cylinders in a car. Relegating him to a corner is not helping Lin or the team. Shooting slump is a confidence issue. Focusing on one and ignoring the other is just "off" it need a holistic approach. He needs to break out of the slump while facilitating the game (which he is good at and will most likely successful). Having success in one area of the game will seep into another area of the game. Success is like a cancer, it spreads and begets another. Success is a catalysis and a medium for confidence... (some might think this view is bs but then again that is Lin1.0 New York's Linsanity, it was about success that begets confidence)

      My better judgement is telling me that they are camping Lin at the corner just to roast marshmallows for the coaching staff. Hey they need them marshmallows and someone gotta roast it.

    2. I'm holding out hope that the coach is using him in a limited way b/c he is still recovering, although I've always suspected that coach doesn't see too highly of JLin just yet. This is from how during preseason even before the harden trade JLin would often be the the backup option behind Kmart plays and plays designed to get post players. I thought it was either Coach preferred post plays over guards or he didn't think JLin was ready as the main offensive driver. Seems like its confirmed that coach has no problem with guards as the number one option from how he used Kmart, and its even more apparent in how he is using harden. Conclusion so far is just that McHale isn't very high in Jin as the offensive core. Thinking back to the reporter who noticed this early on in the preseason and asked why jlin wasn't as involved on offense, and whom coach subsequently mocked by saying the pg is always involved because he brings the ball up court, it is quite clear now the reporter was actually on to something. Only now, coach can't even say JLin is involved because he brings the ball up court! Even his role in the offense of bringing the ball up court is diminished! I guess this isn't surprising considering this is the same coach who by JLins own admission did not give him much reps before cutting him.

    3. McFAIL is not sold on Lin. That is why he uses Harden so much. McFAIL and Morey have an infatuation with Harden and probably believe he's a superstar.

    4. Only LIN can diminish Lin's role.

      If the coaches did what you guys asked, it would demoralize Lin MORE. He's already feeling insecure about his broken jump shot, and putting more pressure on Lin to produce would only make things worse faster.

      Let Lin try to focus on scoring from the weakside. Once he gets his mojo back, he can go back to being a primary guard. But it's on Lin to EARN that back.

  2. I miss the old aggressive playmaker Lin. This new system of forcing the ball to Harden is flawed on so many levels. They are making Harden's stats look good at the expense of the entire rest of the team.

    1. Absolutely!

      One of the most stupid offensive sets I have ever seen. PREDICTABLE.

      Lin walks the ball to midcourt then passes to Harden. Harden goes through the screen. Nothing there because of the incompetent frontcourt. Harden shoots a contested three = Bricked or Blocked

      Those were the plays of the Rockets.

  3. Now, this game exposes the weaknesses of Harden. Under pressure, his so called pg instincts are lost. He starts to become a blackhole.

    The main problem is the offensive gameplan and especially COACHING. Today, McFAIL proves how incompetent he is. Running the exact plays all over again and expecting a different result?

    Harden is better playing off the ball. Sure he's still the no.1 option but no need to force him to become a point guard.

    Lin cannot succeed as a shooter. Did Spoelstra forced Wade to become a shooter upon the arrival of Lebron? No

    They need to maximize the talent of all the players. Harden is an excellent catch and shoot shooter and Lin is terrific playmaker.

    If they are just going to continue marginalizing Lin's talent then just trade him. Trade him to the Lakers for Nash. :)

    Anyways, I expect McFAIL to be gone after 2-3 weeks. here are some lists of replacement for McFAIL:

    1. Jerry Sloan
    2. Jeff Van Gundy
    3. Stan Van Gundy
    4. Mike D'antoni

    1. Trade Lin to the Pacers for George Hill

    2. You think McFail will be out so soon?!

      I would think they give him at least the rest of the season.

    3. He'll last until the end of November then Goodbye McFAIL

    4. Neph,

      Every game counts. Last year it came down to one or two game for 3 teams whether they made the playoffs or not. And in the Atlantic Div, only a few games separated between the top 4 teams.

      If they are going to make a coaching change, they need to do it SOON, like after 3 more games (if they lose the next 3 - which is a real possibility under the present strategy - it's a 5 game losing streak).

      The laziness (in the brain) in the coaching staff shows. They are as lazy as Wo_dson in not wanting to bother with rookies (as backups) in real games. D'Ant_ni played Fields the first year and he did well. Plus look at all other rookies this year playing important roles for other teams.

      Smart coaches win games. I speculate the current Rockets roster is capable of 44-38 for 7th in WC; and 50-32 for 5th in WC if they get another superstar plus one better backup PG. Then anything can happen in the playoffs. It's actually better to go under the radar a bit going into the playoffs.

  4. "My bigger concern is Jeremy not getting to the line. This is probably a combination of his injury (not having full explosiveness around the rim) and trying not to be as reckless to cut down on his turnovers. Not sure this is such a good thing. I was never too worried about his high turnover rate last season. Once he regains most of his explosiveness, I bet you'll see him being much more aggressive going to the basket."

    - I beg to disagree respectfully. Indeed, his finishing ability is not there yet but how can he be aggressive if he barely touch the ball. It is the fault of the coaching staff.

  5. The irony is that the coach talked about "offense is not democratic" but they let their 2nd best player had the fewest shot attempts and last option in the starting 5. I guess they might not think of Lin as their 2nd best player...

    1. JLin is getting the shots, just not making them yet. Buy I agree that the way coach is paying Jlin shows that he's just a backup option to vary the offense from time to time.

    2. What kind of shots? 3pt shots

      Lin is not a perimeter shooter. He's a SLASHER

    3. Yes, the four three pt shots were I believe spot ups. But he also had opportunities to shoot around the rim, but he's not getting those in yet.

      I'd like to see coach actually designing plays to free up JLin either to get a shot off the dribble or at least for him to get the ball off cuts.

  6. i will also note how McFail will not play LIN without Harden but he plays Harden without LIN. It might be nice to see Jeremy out there with NO Harden so he can just be "the guy" for a few minutes...

  7. I think if the Rockets gameplan is to let Harden dominate the ball and have Lin off the ball, then Lin should learn to move without the ball more. He can study how Wade cuts to the basket and scores easy basket off Lebron passes. I am sure Harden is unselfish enough to pass if he sees an opening. Lin standing in corner like a Steve Novak or Shane Battier is the worst idea.

    1. Or at least give him some off-ball screen so that he can have some separation. Yes, he is not a shooter. It is like telling to Wade to stand around the 3pt line and shoot if you're open.

    2. The problem arises when Harden is being guarded by an elite defender. He's not used to being guarded by that kind of defense. If Harden cannot break down the defense then Lin's cutting will be useless. The offense will solely be perimeter shots.

    3. Unfortunately in NBA when a player is send to the opposite corner, he needs to stay there for many strategic reason. Unless the play has someone else to replace him. That is why it totally don't make any sense to send Jeremy there.

      Remember how much Melo hated being at that post under the DeAntoni system.

    4. You can allow Lin to go through several screens freeing him up. Then, he'll have the choice to shoot a mid-range shot or drive to the basket. Just like Hamilton in a way.

      Also, just like Wade. Lin will probably need to learn to be an off-ball player since the unintelligent McFAIL will probably continue the Harden Hero Ball. The problem with that is when Harden doesn't draw multiple defenders then Lin will get few open lanes.

      Moreover, Lebron and Wade learned to play off each other rather than take turns in their isolations. Harden is most effective when he plays off the ball like what he did in OKC. He shoots 39% from 3s so he is a better spot-up shooter and floor spacer than Jeremy.

      Another problem with the Rockets is the lack of off-ball movement such as cutting to the basket. This problem stagnates the offense even further. There are times in a pnr play that the defense is forced to move due to the shifting of the players' positions.

      This is what the SPURS are doing. The Rockets may pale in comparison with the Spurs but it will still help them. The vary the pnr plays. First, they allow Parker or Ginobli to run through off-ball screens forcing the defense to move. Once they received the ball, the defense is in its heels (unless they are really good). The defense will be off-balance which makes the pnr plays more effective. This is usually how pnr plays are varied. This is what is lacking in the Rockets since the defense already know the exact positions of every player allowing them to rotate to each one of them.

      Again, I've noticed when Harden is under pressure he has the tendency to hold the ball longer than needed. Moreover, the Rockets offensive sets require too many ball-handlers. Even Delfino and Parsons sometimes become the facilitator. This should never happen. You can observe the various turnovers of Parsons because he tries to be the playmaker too much instead of giving the ball to Lin. I think the Parsons' ceiling is catching up to him. He becomes more and more of a 2nd round pick that he is.

      I also haven't seen a lot of pick and pop plays for Patterson. I think he's a decent mid range shooter. I think he'll be more effective with that role instead of posting up too much. Although he was good last night, he will not be successful in the post against tougher PFs.

      Another thing I've observed is that Douglas had more pnr plays than Lin despite Lin playing longer. Douglas rarely deferred to Harden while Lin almost always deferred to Harden. The irony of the gameplan.

      The threes taken by the Rockets may be slightly open but I felt that those threes are either forced or not in rhythm. In the preseason, Parsons was shooting better because the ball movement was better so the shots are in rhythm. However, the lack of ball movement really backfires for the Rockets in the 3pt line despite being open a lot. It is easier to hit 3pts when the ball is moving well.

      Lin's aggressiveness obviously is not the same. I think because the offensive system of McHale is the cause for that. His system is not really a pg dominant. So many ball handlers are involved that hockey assists are prevalent. But that would work if the roster is talented. We all know the froncourt sucks and the bench is no better. So, his system is destined to fail because of the lack of talent.

      LAst season, Dragic and Lowry succeeded under Mchale because the Rockets last season utilized Adelman's free flowing offense. McHale did not fully implement his complex and more structured offensive sets due to the lockout. So, he has no choice but to adapt the previous plays. That free flowing offense is the system wherein Dragic and Lowry thrived in. But this season, McHale fully implemented his COMPLEX offense; thus, Lin is hold in chains. He looks passive because the system really limits his options. His recovering knee is also contributing to his passive tendencies.

    5. @neph

      re: But this season, McHale fully implemented his COMPLEX offense

      I try to watch as many of the post game and practice interviews as I can, but I still miss a lot of them, so if you can fill in any gaps I have I'd appreciate it. Preseason, I was under the impression we had like only four plays. This was before Harden. So if Harden shows up on your lap, and you have only four plays that don't include him (because you are *not* going to give him the same type of role you would give KMart... or would you?) it's probably safe to assume you jerry-rig something for your star.

      Now, I agree that these 3 rest days could probably have been used better, but then again I don't know what they did in practice these past few days so anything I say would just be conjecture.

      Nevertheless, I think it's a stretch to say we have a fully implemented complex offense.

      By the way, I'm a huge Adelman fan and would prefer him to McHale, but that's not what Morey wants. McHale is going nowhere, so it is what it is.

    6. Dragic and Lowry had Luis Scola to run pick and roll with.

      If Lin had Scola, they would be running that pick and roll. But Scola (and his athletic inability to stop opponents from scoring) is GONE.

      Lin and Harden can't run pick and roll. They don't have a roll partner capable of scoring, which they need to make the play work. If I were coaching the Rockets, I wouldn't run pick and roll either.

    7. @KHuang,

      So no PnR as Scola is gone; with the existing roster, what could be the plays that win games?

    8. What plays do you intend the rockets play without the pnr?

      Post up Asik or Patterson ? Weak
      Isolate Harden ? Ball hog , Brick, and Turnovers
      Isolate Lin ? He doesn't even get to touch the ball a lot
      Shoot contested 3s? BRICK

      Harden is running a lot of PnR plays but holds the ball too long. (Melo 2.0)
      Lin is absolutely being marginalized by McHale and Harden. There was limited Lin PnR

    9. Lin just has to hit a few more jumpers.

      Once he does that, the court will open up. Doesn't matter where he's deployed.

      Bear in mind that I'm interested in Lin winning, not necessarily scoring 20 on 20 shots.

      I keep saying that as Lin goes, so do the Rockets. The good thing is that Lin is steadily getting better.

      When I think of Lin, typically he starts out slow and then becomes more comfortable. That's how it was in NY where he sat for 23 games before forcing his way onto the court and at Harvard where he averaged like 4 points as a freshman.

      This season, Lin has been playing great in all aspects except shooting. He'll solve the shooting too, as he obviously has it in him to be a GREAT shooter in the NBA.

    10. Lin is not a shooter. He is a slasher/Finisher

    11. Lin shoots just fine, contrary to your Rocket hating opinions.

    12. Or I should say Lin is a naturally good shooter who will have great results if he just tweaks his form a little bit.

    13. neph is right,if Jlin will continue his brand of play he will lose his touch of the game and eventually lose his confidence,the only way to break out your slump is play aggressive,penetrate and earn your points on the line,and i am sure this is where his very good at,i wanna see the jlin that i saw in NY,this is not the Jlin that i know.I hope he'll be back on his old self.I hope he'll not just bring the ball mid court and pass to someone else,then spot up for a 3 point play,that's not his strength at all.To be a very good PG you need to earn it,play like its always like a championship game,no excuses,if you lose at least you have played your best,not just playing safe ball.

    14. very good thread, guys. let's keep the name calling down a bit. nobody is hating here..

      couple of thoughts:

      - based on lin's post game interview, it doesn't seem to me that he is intentionally deferring to harden. when ask if it's an adjustment for him to play off the ball so much, he sounded a little surprised then said "now that you mentioned it, yeah i guess i'm playing off the ball a little more". he didn't really realize he was doing it. what that tells me is that 1)mchale is not mandating that lin defers to harden and plays off the ball. i'm sure the team understood that harden is to be first offensive option which he should be, but it's also lin's natural tendency to try to get his teammates involved before looking for his own shots. however, whether or not handing the ball to harden then runs to the opposite corner is an effective way of getting harden involved is questionable at best.

      2)harden, being the first option, needs to recognize when to go the second option. but instead, he holds on to the ball and causes the offense to be stagnant. nothing wrong with lin giving it to harden where he likes to initiate and if nothing is there, swing it to lin on the weakside and let him shoot/pass/drive. jeremy is a great decision maker and the coaches trust him to make the right decision on the weakside. however, when the ball stops or take too long to work its way to lin, there's not a whole lot he can do in that corner. also, when the ball is in harden's hands, other needs to set screens and picks to set lin free when it's apparent that the harden option has been taken away. the team currently doesn't have a good understanding of what to do when option 1 is not available to them. this is on coaching.

    15. Lin's TOO STRONG to lose confidence.

      He'll start hitting his shots. Then it won't matter where he's deployed because already nobody can stop his penetration.

      Systems don't make players. Players make systems.

      Besides, guys like Larry Bird and Lin's coach McHale got into the Hall of Fame by playing out of the corners!

  8. Neph, I like your fire. Keep it up.

    From a fellow fan, long time lurker.

  9. same here. waiting for KHuang's thoughts on this and then both of you firing up again. haha

    1. I'm not like neph who's strictly a Spurs fan wishing ill on Jeremy Lin and the Rockets because of his perceived intrasyate rivalry.

      I'm a NBA fan who likes ALL the teams and ALL the players, even Lin's ex team the Knicks.

      I'm an NBA homer, not a crazed Lin fan (or antifan). Thus I view Lin in context of their entire league, and I REALLY LIKE what I see even in losses.

  10. Heh heh.

    I'm not like neph, trying to get people fired from their jobs and hating on people. I'm the anti neph and pro Lin!

    Obviously Eremy Lin is the 2nd coming of Ason Kidd or Magic Ohnson. All of those guys had flawed ump shots but figured out that shooting is not so much an art but a matter of VOLUME.

    I may not like the way Eremy's shooting form looks due to Doc Scheppler's coaching ("textbook" but awkward looking to me due to it's jackknifing body mechanics), but Jeremy simply has to keep shooting.

    I posted previously that there are more misses in 10-20 than in 2-9. Just keep firing, Eremy!

    1. Lin should shoot the way he's been shooting all his life. It's what he is most comfortable with has been effective. What he had to do is quicken the release to adjust to NBA defenses. Changing the form entirely is like changing one's natural gait, which probably can take a lifetime to transform.

    2. Quickening Lin's release would necessitate a change in Lin's form.

    3. Not necessarily. He could've kept his "throwing" form from college and simply released a bit earlier rather than hanging onto it till he reached the peak of his jump. Same form, earlier release by a split second. That would equate to a quicker release and usually a higher arc.

    4. The Rockets should bring in THE GUY to teach Lin how to shoot better: Calvin Murphy!

      Calvin Murphy is still associated with the Rockets franchise. He was a great NBA shooter in his day. He definitely could show Lin a thing or two about changing his footwork to get both a quicker release and a smoother higher arc on his shot.

      Lin is a GREAT practice shooter, but it's different in games. I'm of the mindset that a great practice shooter isn't necessarily a great game shooter, and vice versa.

    5. Lin has always been a streaky and clutch shooter.

      So far this season, however, he's shooting poorly, not just streaky.

      Lin already has`a very quick release and a high arc on his shot. ESPN did a thorough segment on Lin's J last season. A 3rd element identified by ESPN in Lin's jumpshot was the tremendous lift and height Lin generated with his jump into his jumpshot. It rivaled Ray Allen's J's lift and height.

      If there is a technical downgrade in Lin's J this season, it's due to his knee. Lin's loss in explosiveness going to the basket translates to less lift and height on his jumpshoot, too, because Lin jumps explosively into and relies a lot on the lift from his explosive jump in his jumpshot.

    6. eric, great point.

      i still subscribe to the belief that he hasn't regained his strength and explosiveness due to the surgery and that has effected both his layups and jumpers.

      but one thing doesn't make sense, though... he supposedly shot great in his summer workouts when the knee was even less ready than it is now.... hmmmm...

    7. In the NBA, ALL players are "streaky".

      Even Steve Nash can be streaky. Look at him now with LA.

      There is no such thing as a guard who isn't prone to streaky shooting. Lin actually isn't much different from a lot of star guards that way.

      Lin needs to fire with impunity. Russell Westbrook just went 7-22 in an OKC win!

  11. @JLinfan#1

    Good post. Thank you for recognizing that Harden is indeed looking for Lin. Agreed that poor shooting was responsible for our loss; Denver had a pretty sorry night too so the opportunity was handed to us on a platter, we just didn't take it.

    I also agree with your assessment on JLin's shooting; FT% shows stroke is fine. It's a confidence/mental(overthinking) thing. I really hope he works it out.

    re: not getting to the line, it's classy for you not to say it but I will say if for you, these refs are killing him. Literally. If players know he is not going to get calls, they will go after him harder and harder. It starts with a bloody nose, where will it end?

    1. I HATE refs in the NBA.

      I've seen such better refereeing outside the NBA than in it. There's too much favoritism while guys like Lin are put in physical danger.

      Here's an example of that. Blake Griffin flops twice against David Lee, trying to draw fake calls. The referees ignore it, and David Lee ends up screaming at Griffin to "stop flopping". Griffin goes unpenalized, which means MORE FLOPPING.

      At least the referees aren't putting Lin in constant foul trouble. That would almost be worse than letting Lin be bashed.

      I was worried that teams were bounty hunting Lin, but I'm relieved to see that isn't happening. I don't give the refs the credit for that, though.

      I know this: If the refs called games fairly, the entire NBA power structure would change overnight. Suddenly good guys would start appearing out of nowhere and there would be much more parity in the league.

    2. re: At least the referees aren't putting Lin in constant foul trouble.

      Considering how active he is, I'm surprised he doesn't get more fouls called(e.g. reach ins when he goes for the steals). Lin's defense is just so clean (Exhibit A: Lin on Gallinari).

      I did have to chuckle last night though. Earlier in the Google hangout Lin mentioned that he really likes Jason Kidd, and he pointed to the little things like grabbing a shirt or giving a push as one of the reasons. Lin got called on it, but I rather liked his hook arm around Faried's waist.

    3. I remember JLin teaching kids to keep a firm stance. He mentions this is required because of defensive players nudging people on the hips to get them off balance and tapping guys on their upper arms to get them to lose the ball. I'd say JLin would benefit a lot if he has a veteran guard from whom he can learn even more of those veteran tricks!

    4. The Clippers Flop the most of any team in the NBA. They also have the greatest FLOPPER in the NBA: Blake Griffin

    5. Joey Crawford is the worst referee in the NBA. He's a Lakers fan. This is the same referee that ejected Duncan because he's laughing while in the Bench. This happened in the playoffs. He also screwed the SPURS in Game 4 of the 2008 WCF between SPurs-Lakers.

    6. wilc,

      Agreed. A big loss for Lin from the Knicks not matching the Rockets contract offer was the lost opportunity to play with Jason Kidd, who stated a reason he chose the Knicks was the opportunity to mentor Lin.

  12. What's up with the refs "letting guys play" this year. LIN is always getting body contact, wrist slaps, and even slam to the ground last night and no calls. He needs to bust his nose with blood bleeding everywhere to get a foul??This is bull shit. This ain't NFL.

    But seriously, the past few games have been the same. The refs aren't calling his fouls when he does attack the rim!!! F**KING REFS!! DO YOUR JOB!!

    1. This season refs are not giving the offensive player the benefit of the doubt. Offensive players who initiate contact and are looking for fouls are not getting them called and its showing.

      Look at harden and the way he drives. He drives ball extended looking for people to wack his arms, so he can get a call and a possible and one. The refs werent giving him the call and thus all the turnovers.

      Lin likes to hang in the air on his drives as he goes into a player and look for the ref to give him a call and a possible and one but again the refs are not giving players those calls this year.

      It is not just this game, its been like that all year for many games. Reason you are seeing games where teams are only shooting 10 fts and games where teams are shooting 40-50 FTs. Some crews are following the mandate and some crews are not.

    2. @blackbishop

      You're absolutely correct. The rule change was last year* but I didn't really see any difference, I guess this year it's going to be enforced. If that's the case, and if it's consistent throughout the season and across teams, I'm ok with it.

      Harden will definitely have to adjust. He has that beautiful first long step, he holds the ball low and far out in front of him, exactly for the reason you state. His turnovers last night that were because he was trying to get to the foul line are forgivable (to me... i know not to a lot of you!) because of the potential call, but that goes out the window obviously if the refs have changed their style.

      One guy this could have really affected is Kevin Martin. His goofy shooting style and associated fakes were money for getting the and 1. He is always near the top of the free throws attempted list, and I think he's even lead one or two years. Rox fans are well familiar with his poor fourth quarter production... lots of it had to do with not getting the calls in the fourth. Anyways, I say could have because it looks like the majority of his points now are open threes. I don't get the KMart hate on this board, but it's a moot point now.


    3. anti-flopping rule this year, likely extended to guidance to refs, too.

  13. Why did the rockets shoot poorly from the 3pt line ?
    - They players are forced to shoot contested or semi contested jumpshots. Others are not shooters but are forced to be shooters (Lin and Parsons)

    Why did they shoot a lot of 3s?
    - Because they couldn't get to the basket often and they tend to isolate so much leading to a desperation jumpshot (HARDEN).

    Why is the ball movement bad?
    -because they forced a borderline all-star to play like he's the second coming of Michael Jordan. Too much isolation and hero ball. Harden was holding the ball longer than he should have.

    Whose fault is that?
    - The INCOMPETENT and UNINTELLIGENT Coaching Staff of the Rockets who wants Lin to be a spot up shooter.

    Despite the atrocious shooting of the players, it is still the fault of MCFAIL because the players were placed in a bad position for those jumpers. Lin is not a shooter period. He can improve but he'll never be a steve nash-like shooter. Harden is better as a spot up shooter than shooting off the dribble. The rest are hopeless from 3. So why keep shooting 3s. Those 3pt attempts aren't in rhythm. In the preseason, they were hitting those 3s because the ball movement was better; thus, the shots are in rhythm.

    McHale is holding Lin back. I'm also convinced that he doesn't even trust Lin. Also Morey. Both Morey and McFAIL do not want Lin at all. They practically run all their plays around Harden who keeps proving why he's at his best when he's the third option.

    Until McHale lets Lin have his freedom, Lin will continue playing passive. McHale is FAR WORSE than Woodson. At least Woodson maximizes Lin's Ability.

    1. it's totally a product of the system they run. in order for mchale to give lin free rein, he'll need to overhaul his system.

      i'm not sure i agree with your assessment that mchale wants lin to be a spot up shooter only. i think the strategy is to let harden dictate what the defense will do. if harden is left in a one-on-one situation then he can take his man off the dribble, shoot, or pass. if the defense collapse on him, then it's up him to move the ball quickly and find the second option, preferably lin on the weakside to attack the defense.

      but, harden, wanting to justify his contract, is playing hero ball and not moving it despite being tightly guarded. that's on him.

  14. James Harden is like Manu Ginobili. If you watch the Spurs game they don't put Tony Parker out on an island in the corner when Manu Ginobili has the ball.

    If I could ask McHale a question it would be what mostly all of us are asking, "Why is Jeremy on the corner baseline on the majority of set plays when Harden has the ball?"

    1. Right. Gm should ask him that. Cause he and mainly the chairman put good money on jeremy. And they didn't get him to be a 3pt shooter cause that's not his game.

      So many good coaches are out there: sloan, d'antoni... Etc

  15. I'm gonna post this response, and then I'm gonna back off for a very brief while simply because this is the only point I have:

    All Lin has to do is shoot the way Lin is capable of shooting.

    It's really as simple as that.

    Lin is a GREAT shooter in the NBA when he's not overcoached on his form or overthinking. Golden State's excellence, Linsanity, and Woodson's 6-1 record amply demonstated that Lin is an AMAZING on court shooter in the NBA when he's not trying too hard.

    I'll never accept that a guy who shot 50+% in college, won game after game all his life in buzzer beating situations, and scored 21 points two games ago is "not a shooter" like neph tries to make people erroneously believe.

    To me, it's just a matter of time before Lin gets accustomed to his role on the Rockets and starts hitting shots. When that happens, Lin will become an EXCELLENT scorer for the rest of his NBA career!

    Once Lin figures out how to shoot in the next few games, the Rockets will adjust their game plan around him. I myself would be sending Lin to the corner because I don't trust his shooting. Yet I'd keep him on the court because of his All Star excellence in all other facets of the game.

    There's SO MUCH TO LIKE about Lin's game otherwise. He can get to the basket at will, though he draws a crowd of defenders. He is playing amazing defense, and I said in preseason that he's the BEST defensive pg I've ever seen in my decades of watching the NBA. Lin has a total understanding of the game plan and is a great teammate.

    Jeremy Lin is playing at an All Star level outside of his brick shooting from outside. If he could hit just a few more of those jump shots to keep teams honest, the game would open up for him. Then if I were his coach, I'd stop sending him to the corner and would start using him in situations where I could trust that jump shot of his!

    No more for me for a while. I'm enjoying Lin's progress. Once he gets his jumpshot back, I'll overpost like I usually do!

    1. I know how you feel bro. We all need to take a deep breath and relax. Reading these posts just increases anxiety and doesn't help LOL...see you soon bud.

    2. Even during the 21 points win, he shot 6 for 16. I am going to celebrate when Lin shoots better than 50% in one game. :)

    3. Lin didn't build up his college FG% shooting from distance in college. He's always been a streaky shooter - good enough from outside to keep defenses honest and he's clutch, but not his strength. His bread-and-butter has always been going towards the basket. His 3-pt shooting did improve significantly in college, though.

  16. I just happen to see this article on how McHale was not happy in the acquisition of Jeremy Lin and Omer Asik? Is this article legit? Is this what McHale really sees in Jeremy Lin? If so, is this why he's not letting JLin run the offense like he should?

    1. At the time of the Lin signing, McHale had some comments about Lin that were more pointed and critical than any comment Woodson had made about Lin.

    2. sounds like he believed that they were merely a few moves away from being a contender rather than a total fire sale and rebuild.

      not sure i blame him, though. he was probably like.. ok i finally know what i have to work with and now you give me 13 new players?

      i imagine it would take at least till all star break for the coaching staff to figure out exactly who is most effective in doing what, etc..

  17. ".... develop the young guys and that we never, ever, ever come to camp again with 13 new guys."

    I think Mchale just prefers guys with more experience which could possibly explain why he is putting the offense through Harden.

  18. Haven't read other analysis after the last couple games, so this is just what I'm seeing:

    1. McHale clearly doesn't believe in Lin. He was part of the management group that cut Lin and I'm guessing he still doesn't want to admit he was wrong. In the preseason they weren't running pick and rolls and they still aren't featuring it, Lin's best play. McHale was always going to deemphasize Lin being the decision maker on this team and that's never going away. Until McHale goes, Lin is going to be underutilized the way Martin was last year.

    2. Harden doesn't have a good enough first step to get past elite defenders when he's the first option. Lin does. It's absolutely insane that Harden is playing point guard right now, but that's how little faith McHale has in Lin.

    3. Lin's shot is really not broken. Lin's shooting 93% on free throws. His off season work HAS improved his shot. At some point it hopefully connects to game shooting, but there's a couple problems. Lin's confidence is low due to his recognition that McHale doesn't believe in him and will cut his minutes if he makes mistakes. And, Lin is missing layup after layup.

    4. Why is Lin missing layups? One reason is because he was more athletic last year. That's not just because his knee hasn't healed all the way. It's because he trained with Sparta the off season before last and he increased his vertical significantly. He went to China this last offseason instead of training with Sparta. This was a bizarre decision to me. He needed to recover the elite vertical and lateral speed he'd developed with Sparta. It's not going to just come back from playing NBA games. NBA games actually suppress your explosiveness because it's so much endurance work. As an NBA player, the only opportunity you have to develop explosiveness is your off season program, and he squandered it.

    But the other reason he's missing layups is cos he keeps jumping into defenders trying to get foul calls. It's a point of emphasis that officials are not calling that this year. I don't know why he hasn't adjusted. Last year, he didn't try to get fouls, he tried to make layups and he'd get foul calls incidentally. It's bizarre that he's changed this behavior. He's missed so many makable layups so far by not focusing on the shot and seeking calls instead.

    5. The first game this year, Harden and Lin played off each other extremely well and it worked marvelously. Each game, the offense has moved more toward iso Harden. It's truly insane. Ralph Sampson had a defensive quote where he said, "Sure Harden needs to learn to play in the flow of the offense but if he isn't taking the most shots, that's a problem." WTF? Harden has always taken the most shots. He always will. Houston had the 5th rated offensive efficiency in preseason by freaking passing the ball. Imagine how much higher their efficiency could be doing the same thing, but having a player the caliber of Harden doing it too.

    6. McHale has to go. He thinks he's smarter than everyone else and proves it by underutilizing his most efficient players. He did it with Martin last year and he's doing it with Lin this year. He's not putting Harden in a position to succeed either. D'Antoni is available. Get him. The Knicks last year under D'Antoni had a 5th rated defense. Houston has the personnel to do the same. And, D'Antoni will make this roster's offense hum.

    1. Good comments and analysis. Seems Lin is not adjusting and adapting to what D or refs are giving him.

    2. Interesting take on Sparta training vs Asia marketing trip. The knee recovery is taking longer than expected. Lin did train this off season, but coming back from an injury as well as for maintenance upkeep, perhaps he should have trained even more than he did the previous season?

      Anti-flopping is a league-mandated focus this season. That could be related to Lin getting fewer calls.

      In the Pistons game with the newly acquired Harden, McHale played his smartest, most versatile, most veteran line-up and allowed them to play off each other intuitively. But that lasted 3Qs. Harden Pippenized Lin in the 4Q, although at the time, it could be excused as Harden simply being hot and Lin properly stepping aside for the hot hand. It does seem that the offense has become more stagnant since the Pistons game.

    3. Agreed with what was said above. Lin has regressed badly for a variety of reasons.

      Lin needs scorers at almost all positions around him because he's more a Rondo/Kidd than Iverson/Kyrie Irving and he needs the ball in his hands.

      The Rockets don't trust Lin to lead. Whether it was Kmart or Harden, they want those guys to do the heavy lifting and decision making.

      Lin is literally becoming the Asian Avery Johnson...remember Johnson was accused of not being able to shoot as well and just stood in the baseline corner all game and eventually made big shots in the playoffs because other teams left him wide open all day.

    4. Not so sure that McHale does not believe in Lin. I'll wait a couple more games before concluding on that. I do think that McHale seems to be relying too heavily on Harden. I don't know that McHale is coaching as much as he is just relying on Harden after that first game. McHale does not strike me as someone who is really hard-nosed and can get players to actually perform the detailed fundamentals to execute like Popovic. Then again who can? I think it's just a matter of time for Jlin to but loose. I get the feeling that he is not fully confident of his knee, he looks a tad timid on O and actually looks a step slow (as a result). Simply put, he does not look like himself right now.

    5. Great 6-point analysis and observation. I hope Lin or some of his people are reading it.

      BTW, I noticed that Kobe haven't adjusted to referees not giving him as many FTs this year - and he barks about it too. He's been given too many FTs each year, whether he deserved it or injured opponents.

    6. Kobe's been doing that for almost a decade now...He resorted to the swinging elbow follow through to make a point, got suspended, and started getting foul calls again.

      If he doesn't start getting calls, it's only a matter of time before he "accidentally" injures his defender yet again.

    7. I know Lin trained in China. Unfortunately, everyone trains. Only a tiny fraction of trainers elicit meaningful gains in true athleticism as easily measured in, especially, vertical jump tests. Sparta did that. It's clear from the fact that Lin wouldn't even dunk on a wide open break away, that his athleticism is not at the same level it was last year. I know from experience that a few inches of vertical make THE difference in whether you can toy with defenders off the dribble and finish at the rim with ease.

  19. Jeremy Lin's shooting is atrocious.

    His field goal percentage is currently 36% and an abysmal 23% from 3-point range.

    This is almost Omar Asik-levels of shooting mediocrity.

    Somewhere Stephen A. Smith and Carmelo Anthony are laughing to themselves.

    1. the best way to end yourself is to dwell in criticism. You're so busy listening to your critics and being afraid to make a mistake that you can't be yourself and progress. Such is the path to failure.

      fortunately, I don't think JLin is like that at all and I'm sure we'll continue to see him improve

    2. @lxy, calm down, the sky is not falling. It's only been 4 games. Even great shooters can have periods where their shots are not falling. In fact, here are a few players that have shot poorer than 35% FG (minimum 10 attempts/game) and 20% 3PT (minimum 3 attempts/game) over 4 or more games since the '85-'86 season: Danny Ainge, Ray Allen, Dell Curry, Kevin Durant, Jeff Hornacek, Reggie Miller, Anthony Morrow, Dirk Nowitzki, Steve Nash, Peja Stojakovic, Jason Terry. Lin will be fine.

  20. On the positive side, Lin has been able to contribute in other ways such as rebounds, steals, and, to a lesser extent, lessening turnovers and distribution of the ball.

  21. I was thinking that if Rockets had a decent PG back-up who could score, Lin could lose his starting job. Lin is fortunate that both Douglas and Machado's offensive scores are very limited, and both frankly, are not even good back-ups. If Machado gets put in and plays well, who knows maybe he will get the back-up job. Sure glad Lin has 3 year guaranteed K.

  22. You can see Lin's college stats from here:

    Doesn't seem bad at all, especially during his Junior and Senior year. Of course, he was playing against Ivy League players, but their D is pretty good.

  23. this is not the jeremy lin the i saw in NYK,i dont know if this is by design or him playing safe ball.He will just bring the ball up court and pass to someone else.Thats not basketball at all,you need to play where you good at,basketball is about skills and aggressiveness,if he will stay that way,he will lose his starting position.How would you become a premier PG if you always pass the ball to someone else,you need to own your position and be aggressive all the time,if he will stay this way,his game will deteriorates and eventually will lose his confidence.You need to show your coach and team maates that you deserve to steer the ship,otherwise it will sink pretty badly

  24. People shouldn't think Morey is wedded to McHale. Morey has posted recently in various places on the Internet with a clear understanding of what Lin's strengths are. If McHale's coaching doesn't get par out of Lin and Harden, McHale is going to go.

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    1. I hope Bynum doesn't join. He's injury prone and not a good team player.

    2. at jimmy, not eb5attorney whose opinion I sort of agree with.

  26. I take the blame for the lin's performance: i didn't pray enough yesterday... It'llbe the last time.

    After the blazers' game i was concerned that jeremy was the sg and harden pg. Guess things didn't change at all.

    Things can't get better if Mchale make the team play like that. Jeremy needs to hold the ball and harden must be the shooter and in case go 1vs1.

    1. lol, a true fan who owns up to his failures...

    2. haha, spotless.. don't get down on yourself for not praying enough :D

      keep on prayin' but remember that the answer could be yes, no or ... wait.
      hopefully McHale and the coaches don't wait 20 games before seeing the error of their ways

  27. I am actually going to stop watching the Houston games live till February and just look at the box scores first. For me, this is starting to feel like watching Lin at GSW and NYK all over again. You feel he can do more but he's handcuffed, although he is shooting atrociously and driving when he should shoot and shooting when he should drive too often. I thought Houston brought him in because they believed in him, but I was wrong because the coaching staff definitely does not believe.

    I still give Lin till Feb to sort out this mess, but I am dissapointed in that I know he will never get the ball on this team this year. Even if Lin does well, he will get his 20,6ast,5rbs,4stls being the deferential spot up shooter, defensive hustler with a few layups and maybe 2-4 trips to the line mixed in like the Atlanta game. It won't be in a dynamic fashion.

    There is only 1 way out for Lin out of this mess - he needs to start hitting almost all of his jumpers and save himself. If he doesn't, I won't be surprised to see him get benched or minutes reduced big time if the Rockets get a quality name backup guard before the trade deadline. This is just to save his job!

    But no matter what he does, Lin will not be getting the ball as the PG anymore on this team with this current coaching staff. That's a big coaching error but that's the hand Lin was dealt and he's not making the most of it.

    Despite what some think on here, the coaches don't have a secret plot to make Lin look bad. They just don't trust him to save their own jobs. They'd rather lose their jobs putting the ball in Harden's hands. They'd prefer to marginalize Lin so if they lose their jobs, they can at least feel good about it doing what they thought was best to win games. They are hoping Harden can dominate and if Lin does get the ball back on kick outs, that Lin can at least hit those shots. But since Lin is shooting horribly, they trust him even less. The one or 2 times Lin has the ball to make plays? He tried to take Faried to the hole and threw up a jumping pass of a turnover instead of doing a stepback like he did on Luke Ridnour last year or some of his crazy stepbacks I saw in D-league.

    I am dissapointed in both the Rockets' staff inability to max out Lin's strengths for this team and trust him as the PG, and I'm also dissapointed in Lin for showing up to camp so out of sorts either unprepared, unfocused, or just flat out unhealed by the knee.

    1. Good analysis. I will watch without all that much expectations. Like I said, I like Dougie for keep shooting even when he sucks. Lin has to do the same. Dribble and pull up and shoot; Just shoot 3's when he's open; dribble and do floaters, etc.

    2. Jlin does not look like himself, I hope it's rust related to the knee and that it heals fully.

    3. As Always, you are correct.

      The Rocket Games are so boring (especially the two home games)

      The team should be called the James Harden Rockets

    4. Man he is in a tough spot. All the fake fans who rode the linsanity train last year all turned on him and even bash him to feel good about their own team although nyk is doing just fine it seems. And all the jealous Asian haters that built up doing his great run are very much still here and is growing as we speak.

  28. JLinfan#1: "Harden actually looked for Jeremy quite a bit."

    That goes to the crux of the issue, no?

    The issue for Lin as the Rockets PG is more about his touches - which guard is controlling the ball and running the offense - than his FGA/game or Pts/game, although those stats matter, too. Your statement incorporates the premise that Harden is in control of the ball and he decides whether to include Lin.

    Harden's early diplomatic quotes about Lin were promising, but since he's joined the team, his statements have expressed that the team's offense runs through him as the heart and engine of the Rockets offense.

    As for McHale, he wasn't happy about losing his veteran PGs from last season and did make some pointed comments about Lin, mixed with his diplomatic statements, at the time of the Lin signing.

    That said, the bottom line is proof on the court. I'm not ready to declare a disaster yet. It's still very early in the season and the team's 2012-13 developmental curve. As glimpsed in the Pistons game, combining the smarts and versatility of Harden, Lin, Delfino, and Parsons and allowing them to work together intuitively can provide a good result. So the Rockets have that option in the pocket. As the Rockets offense struggles and Harden individually struggles, Lin is waiting to regain control of the ball and run the team his way.

    The one aspect of McHale's game-calling that needs to be solved sooner rather than later is the take-turns nature of Lin and Harden's on-court chemistry. In OT of the Blazers game, the 2 guards took turns, which was okay as far as balancing Lin and Harden's usage. But it didn't make the team better.

    There is a risk downside and a reward upside to having a redundant or overlapping G/G combo. The risk is one G will displace the other G so that 1+1<2. In an either/or choice, Harden has higher status than Lin.

    The reward upside is that the two guards blend synergistically to broaden the team's attack and share the backcourt playmaking load. Right now, McHale is in principle travelling down the risk path with his 2 guards. He needs to change his course to the reward path by seeking ways for the 2 guards to blend and play off each other, not just take give up the ball and clear out. I recommend that McHale study tape on how Woodson thoughtfully used Lin in their too-short time together despite the fears that Woodson would marginalize Lin.

    Hopefully, McHale will adjust better than follow the traditional coach's choice of doubling down with the ball in the star playmaker's hands when the team offense struggles.

    Take heart. Although Lin is removed from his Knicks days of Linsanity dominance and balanced floor game under Woodson, Lin is still showing off strengths of his game. His ballhawking and rebounding are strong. He's passing well. He's hustling. He's shown flashes of Linsanity clutch when allowed. Despite his struggles finishing and having a lesser role (so far) than he would have had with the Knicks, Lin is still doing enough positive to make his case to the NBA.

  29. Some postgame interviews after last night's loss courtesy of CSN Houston's Howard Chen. I like how Jeremy is shouldering the responsibility. That's what a leader does!

    1. notice that he sounded surprised when asked about playing off the ball more this season. in other words, he didn't think he was until he really thought about it.

      not sure what this means but could mean that

      1) it wasn't a mandate by mchale for him to defer to harden as much as we've seen, and

      2) he now notices that he needs to take ownership of his role as a pg more and control the ball more.

    2. It's mostly the coach's fault. He needs to make in-game adjustments.

      Among other things, the Rockets are too heavily relying on 3-point shooting.

      .... Nov 7th game:
      ........... Rockets 8 of 33 from 3's (Harden 0-5, Lin 0-4, Morris 0-3. The guys can create their own shots!).
      ........... Nuggets 7 of 18.

      .... Nov 3rd game:
      .............. Rockets 5 of 26 from 3's (Harden 1-6, Delfino 0-5, Lin 1-4, Parsons 1-4).
      ............TBlazers 10 of 24.

    3. I put this link in the previous post, but,


      Q: "Is there a lot of adjustment for you in the preseason and last year, you handled the ball, handled the ball, now you have to play somewhat off the ball. Is that a difficult transition? Is it a big transition? Is that true? Is it accurate?"

      A: "I mean I guess I have been playing a little bit more off the ball... (pause)... yeah, I guess, now that you say it. Yeah. There's a little bit of transition, and..."

    4. Sounds to me like a guy who just hates to lose and doesn't want to make excuses. You hear JHarden saying how the Rockets are still learning to play with one another and you have JLin saying that he needs to execute better.

    5. That's the main problem. Jeremy is not a perimetral shooter, he's a pg. They paid heavy money to get him as pg. If they wanted a 3pt shooter they could get Jj reddick and saving loads of money.

      Now it's up to the gm : if he wants to savethe money he put on jeremy should get a chat with the coach. If things still go on like that i'd prefer jeremy be traded somewhere. He's better than that and deserves better.

      Harden got lots of turnovers, even bad ones: have you seen someone talking about?

    6. @andrewymoon

      Thanks for that link. Maybe, just maybe, Lin deferring to Harden too much is his own idea. But I think most likely NOT: It's probably Sampson's idea with an OK by McHale.

      The Rockets - from top to bottom - are all blinded by Harden's limelight. Giving Harden the superman status isn't practical. It will get the coaches fired and give Harden too much pressure. Last season, for several teams, just one or two games decided whether they made the playoffs or not - or whether they got the home court advantage or not.

    7. That's NBA natural selection, ztrta.

      If the coaches overemphasize Harden, it'll be seen on the court and reverberate off it.

      Meanwhile, Lin can keep playing his game. It's on Lin to grab that ball and make plays, not the coaches.

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  31. The Rockets coaching staff has to be careful not to make the team *mainly* about Harden - even the Heat don't do that with LeBron (perhaps a lot, but not *mainly*) . The Rockets were 5-2 (5-1 with Lin) in preseason *without* Harden AND *with* the use of the rookies. While acquiring Harden was and is fantastic, Rockets' coaching staff has focused too much on Harden and 3-point shooting. You don't want the major acquisition to have a net negative effect on the team, just because he scored a lot in the first 2 games. Other teams adjust, so must the Rockets. Playing team ball is classic; it never goes out of style.

    Since Harden became a Rocket:

    1) They focused too much on Harden.
    2) They marginalized Lin's playmaking.
    3) The rookies didn't play at all.
    4) The Rockets are shooting WAY TOO MANY 3's. Rockets are shooting more 3's, by far, than any other team - and they have been the LEAST SUCCESSFUL at it so far - Had they cut down on the 3's, that alone would have won them the last 2 games - although I suggest they make other adjustments as well for consistency. (The only exception was the Nits, in just that one game, where Miami let them shoot 39 mostly uncontested 3's because of the emotions from the Superstorm Sandy). Unlike other teams, the Rockets keep shooting 3's even when they are not going in that night! Make necessary adjustments during the game (This has to do with coaching) !!!

    1. Their reliance on the 3 ball speaks to their need for another (quality) offensive big man. Seems like Royce should get a shot, but have the staff decided he's not good enough to get minutes?

    2. I think the Rocket's staff would agree with you that Royce needs to get some playing time, but then again so does everyone else on the team... including the starters. Most of the starters are playing their first season as starters and so they need time as well.

      Any time you give a player minutes on the floor, you are taking minutes away from another player, so I'm sure the Rockets coaches have picked a rotation that they are going to use for at least the first 10 or 20 games. They need to let the players get comfortable with their roles and let them grow into their roles as well. It takes time, but I'm sure we will see improvement.

      If things keep going like this, then I'm sure we will see the bench players get some minutes at the cost of a few of the (now) starters.

    3. They need another PF superstar (or another center) and a better backup PG (and drop one... but keep Douglas, who is getting better). But others here would know more about that sort of stuff.

    4. p.s. - Royce White's extreme fear of flying is a big problem. It's effecting practice time with the team too much. I think they regret picking him.

    5. Unless the Royce White documentary was fake, White's agent claimed the White pick was ALL Mchale, that Mchale fought for White to be picked. Makes me wonder about Mchale's competence...Mchale probably relied on Fred Hoiberg though so who knows...

      It's funny the top brass in the Rockets coaching staff is compromised of big time cheaters like Mchale & Kelvin Sampson. Of course the head cheater would hire another big time cheater to be his main assistant.

    6. Here is Mchale's track record as a nba head coach:

      Career 160T 73W 87L .456 no Playoff

      That reveals something about his capacity...

    7. @hoopsmastermind

      Just watching the two previous games, now we know why his record is like that :)

    8. Exactly, neph.

      McHale has worked for small market owners in MN and Houston. In both cases, his teams were underwhelming in talent and payroll. His teams weren't going to win even with the greatest coaching.

      You have stated that stats mean nothing to you. Would you also agree with me that PAYROLL means nothing to you, that this Houston team with its league low payroll is supposed to go out and beat super rich teams like the Lakers and Miami?

  32. I went back and actually reviewed the game on my NBA LP, and I have to say Lin shot several "bricks" on 3 point attempts. It seemed to my untrained eyes that he was not turning enough to his right, i.e., his body was facing too square to the basket. And he was wide open on those shots. No wonder he is losing confidence and as a result, he is passing instead of shooting.

  33. More fuel for the fire:

    1. What does Morey mean that they don't need Lin to play on an All-Star level? So what level do they need him to play? The level of which he becomes a catch and shoot type player who stands in the corner of the baseline?

    2. He says Lin has been solid for them. So he's happy with him beimg marginalized as a non-factor on offense when they iso Harden? I don't know what they're planning, but it's not working. Jeremy Lin needs to handle the ball 90% of the time in order for Harden to get the open looks he needs.

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    4. They are probably afraid that their best player (Harden) isn't selected to the all star game in Houston but Lin is voted in. That would be kinda strange and embarrassing for Harden, Morey and the Rockets franchise. Especially Morey insisted so many times that Harden is going to be an all star this year. Just a conspiracy thought lol.

    5. Morey says they don't need JLin to play at an all-star level and goes on to say he wishes a young player will develope into an all-star. So what Morey actually is saying isn't so much they don't need JLin to play at an all-star level, but that they don't believe that JLin can currently play at an all-star level beyond that 25 game stretch, nor do they believe that JLin has the talent to develope into a player that will play at an all-star level.

      If Morey doesn't see JLin's current ability nor his future potential, he won't give him a chance to prove otherwise.

      JLin has consistently been denied in his career a fair chance to show what his ceiling can be. JLin will have to prove over and over again that he should not be overlooked. JLin will work hard to show that Morey is wrong for not seeing the much higher level of impact JLin at his current level can have on the team. He will work hard also to show that Morey is wrong for not believing that he can develop beyond a 'solid point guard'.

      When the GM's starting point is that JLin isn't an elite talent, JLin will have to do so much more show he is an elite talent.

      Whether or not he can break through the current restraints, JLin has my support regardless of how he turns out!

    6. Wilc, you are absolutely right! But only an idiot like Morey would believe that his group of young power forwards or Chandler Parsons have a higher ceiling than Lin. That is the kind of unfair prejudice that he will have to face in his whole career. The only one who can help himself is himself.

    7. Lin did not have a very strong pre season showing and that is probably why Mchale does not trust Lin.
      There was also an article which talked about how the Rockets organisation was not high on Jeremy including Morey . It was Les that pushed for it.
      In my personal opinion, maybe it is true that Lin should not have spent so much time on his trip although he was training (nearly a month?) He should have spent more time trying to get his knee back. Hope things turn out better :)

    8. Idiot Morey and Idiot McFAIL.

      Trying to marginalize Lin.

      These people are no different from the Knicks management. No Respect for Lin at all.

      When will JLin finally be able to play his brand of basketball without anyone holding him in CHAINS like the Knicks and now the Rockets. This is pure insult to Lin. This is a slap in the face.

      Fine, let them continue their ISO-Harden. We'll see if they can win with that brand of basketball. I hope Les Alexander fires both Morey and McFAIL.

      Or just TRADE JEREMY for goodness sake. Please just Let Lin go if you intend to marginalize his talents. You probably will get better spot up shooters than Lin.

    9. Morey proves he's an idiot.

      His overrated PFs and now his beloved Parsons. He truly believes that those PFS and Parsons have all-star potential. He's DELUSIONAL. He'll eat CROW.

      As seen, Parsons is beginning to prove to the entire world why he is a second round pick. The Power forwards are no different. Jones could be solid but far from a star.


      Trade Lin or use him. You are wasting your money if you use him as a spot up shooter.

      I hope he gets FIRED.

    10. This Rocket management is no different from Lin. Only Les Alexander is the hope for Lin to be free from the CONSTRAINTS of everyone. I hope Alexander yells the hell out MOREY and tell him to LET LIN FREE.

    11. Good thing Jeremy is Les' handpick....

      Just like Carmelo is Dolan's handpick

    12. ISO Harden = Loss
      Ball Movement = WIN

      Let these idiots make Harden their precious superstar.

    13. This comment has been removed by the author.

    14. I actually don't hear Morey marginalized JLin. In response to the trap question if he expects Jeremy Lin to produce like he did with the Knicks (implying Linsanity), he actually defended Lin by saying that Houston is really happy with JLin's current solid contribution and implying Lin is one of the young guys that can be an All-Star.

      You have to read between the lines of the GM talk. If he said upfront that he expects JLin to be an All-Star this season or next season, he will put tremendous pressure for Jeremy to deliver now. Anything short than that, it will prove Houston failed to assess Lin's values. As a GM, he would be foolish put himself and his boss in the position to fail in getting Lin's values now.

      His goal in the PTI interview is to make himself and Les look like a genius in picking Harden and Lin. He's on his way there.

    15. No, we are overestimating Morey's intelligence. He's saying what he believes. This is the same guy that cut Lin in the first place. Let us not forget about that.

    16. I'm not worried about Morey. I'm worried that McHale won't leverage Lin's strength and force him and the other young Rockets to play in his system even if they lose the next 10-15 games.

      The coaches didn't seem to make adjustment quick enough to counter Denver and Portland in the last 2 games.

    17. Psalm234,

      I wouldn't be worried about McHale. He's putting his job in line here. McHale's job is judged by win/loss, not who becomes all stars, kinda opposite to Morey. No matter how he dislikes Lin, if Lin can help him win games, he will be forced to use him. The same has already happened with D'Antoni and Woodson.

    18. i'm with psalm24 on this one.. i don't see or hear what you guys are saying at all.

      he was asked if he EXPECTS jeremy to play at the insanity, all-star level that he played at in New York RIGHT NOW. the smart answer is (and this is after an awful preseason and a bad shooting night last night) that he believes jeremy is doing well and they don't need him to play at the linsanity level RIGHT NOW. he knows the kind of pressure lin in under to perform at an all-star, 25 and 8 level. he even acknowledge how ridiculous it is that people are all over him over one bad game in preseason. he's trying to protect lin and take pressure off of him. remember mchale's comment a while back about lin going too hard and trying to make big plays every time instead of making the easy play? i really think they're trying to take pressure off of lin and let the game come to him.

      also, morey DID acknowledge lin's high upside and he recognizes that what he did in NY could indeed be his upside, meaning he doesn't think it's a fluke and will never be achieved again. he just doesn't need lin to perform at that level right now. just like he's very likely NOT to say that he expects harden to score 40 every night.

      lastly, he did say at the end when asked what he looks for that other may not - and he said that they look for guards that attack the basket and clearly jeremy and james do just that. he doesn't like the traditional, conservative pg's, but rather someone like jeremy that attacks the basket. so that tells me he doesn't want jeremy to stand around and be a spot up shooter

    19. I have confidence that Jeremy isn't going to be shooting that badly all season. He will improve with more games under his belt. All he needs to do is knock down one 3-pointer each game, that will open up the defense to let him drive to the paint.

    20. @ABC Baller

      Yes he'll improve. He'll probably raise his shooting to 45-47% FG and 33-35% 3FG. However, you still cannot deny the fact that his talent is not being maximized. He's most effective if he's penetrating.

      He can shoot but do we really think that would be his best role? No , unless he plans to change his game and decide to play like Nash who is a shooter but cannot finish as good as Jeremy.

    21. Cara, I hope McHale actually put some PnR plays to get Lin and others going and create a lot more ball movement.

      McHale's post game interview said he realized the ball is "sticky' and there was not a lot of ball movement as we saw in the first 2 games.

      What I saw in Denver's game was even distribution in the ball handlers including Parsons and Delfino to set up the offense but the offense became stagnant. Parsons got some TOs trying to be the ballhandler. Coaches asked the players to fit into their system instead of leveraging their strength and defining their roles clearly.

      They just need to go back to the successful formula of Game 1 where Lin was the primary ball handler and Harden was the second. If Harden gets hot, feed him the ball but if not, give it back to Lin to reset the offense.

      They fell in love the idea that Harden can be the primary playmaker. Lin also deferred too much expecting Harden will get hot. When Lin got aggressive in the last 3 min, good things were happening.

      Let's hope McHale and team realize this before they incur too many losses.

    22. Ain't no idiots in the Rockets organization.

      McHale and Morey have been instructed by Les Alexander to strip the 2011 team of ALL its veterans and start anew.

      Essentially the 2012 Rockets are an expansion team with every single player lacking a full season's worth of gamed played at the starter position. Obviously McHale should be dismayed at having such an inexperienced team when he had a team of veterans last year.

      McHale and Morey are still trying to figure out who can and cannot play on this Rockets team. If they don't utilize Lin properly every time down the court, TOUGH. Lin is being paid well, plus he's gotta hit some shots.

    23. what fuel?, didn't find what Morey said very inflamatory.
      JLin isnt playing that bad. We all know that he can't shoot. You don't become a Ray Allen over night, in fact people can work on their jump shots for years and not be able to shoot in a real games.
      Problem with JLin right now is that he over penetrates and gets caught in the air or dont know what to do when he is inside the paint when the big guy comes over and helps. He's gotta develop that short game around the basket, with a soft floater, or a quick stop jump shot. the problem is that his release is way to long, when he tries to do a short jump shot inside the paint it will just get blocked.

  34. I was at the Toyota Center last night, it sucked... The crowd sucked/ people are rude/ just a disgusting environment, no wonder it looked so dead and the Rockets play poor at home...

    1. Harden tried to fire up the crowd near the end of the game. The crowd didn't respond from what I can see on the broadcast. There are also many empty seats. I guess basketball isn't a very big thing in Houston? But as always JLin says he is thankful for the peeps who do show up to show their support, even though the crowd as a whole aren't as enthusiastic as other arenas!

    2. Sometimes, big crowds pump up the players to do better and harden and lin played in front of passionate fans on their previous teams. It is definitely a big change for them . I just hope it does not affect them. If I am not wrong basketball is not the main sport in Houston but if they start winning, things can change.

    3. What do you expect from HOUSTON?

      They have one of the WORST FANS EVER. They like football primarily.

      No Wonder few Superstars want to play in this pathetic CITY.

    4. Houston is a football town. And there is almost no nightlife in downtown Houston, Toyota Center is surrounded by a ghost town after dark.

    5. Disgusting, this blanket flaming of the City of Houston and its fans is.

      You guys are SICK.

    6. I predict the Rockets will have a better road record than home record.

      Harden was lights out on the road while he bricked in front of the unfilled Houstonian crowd.

      Probably the mediocrity by the city was transferred to the players.

      Even clutchfans members admitted their city's lackadaisical attitude towards the ROCKETS.

    7. Houston is a "mediocre" city?

      The place is like the 4th largest city in the nation! Houston didn't get that way by being "mediocre"!

      So the fans aren't as rabid as you'd like. So what? Just like you've been repeatedly told by people here that you don't order folks around, you don't tell Houston fans what to do.

      You're a diehard Spurs homer. Naturally you think San Antonio is closer to heaven than Houston is. But show some respect for Houston regardless of your team ties.

  35. Rockets' strategy for winning... Don't let Jeremy Lin do what he does best

    From Kevin Sampson, Assist. Coach of Rockets...

    JCF: You had Jeremy Lin in for the abbreviated training camp last year, but do you almost have to rediscover his game as well?

    KS: Absolutely. I was watching tape on him yesterday – I watched New York and Dallas – and Jeremy had such incredible freedom; he was their offense when he was on the floor. They put him in pick-and-rolls, they’d screen him and then re-screen him. He would attack the rim and if he could get to the rim he did, and if not he’d kick out and they’d play. With us, we’re going to give him some freedom because obviously he’s good at that, but we’re also going to have rules in our transition offense that he’s going to have to learn so it’s going to be interesting to see how he picks those things up.

    I think the biggest challenge for Jeremy is going to be taking care of the ball and being able to defend bigger, stronger, quicker, more athletic point guards. He’s got to get tougher in those areas. So Jeremy’s got some work to do but the thing I love about him is you look forward to coming in every day with him. Some guys will work grudgingly but Jeremy is a willing worker. He’s been tremendous to work with.

    ... Not very wise in my opinion

    1. I think the biggest challenge for Jeremy is going to be taking care of the ball and being able to defend bigger, stronger, quicker, more athletic point guards.

      Wow how many pgs are bigger and stronger than Lin? There are but this guy makes it sound like everyone. Teague, collison, rubio (taller but frail), george hill, lawson, nash, paul, jennings, lillard, kemba, knight, rondo, felton, mo will, conley, jameer all smaller.

    2. I don't see a darned thing wrong in that interview.

      Jeremy Lin has indeed met the challenges of defense and ball protection. Good coaching by Sampson to get Lin there, and good playing by Lin to accept Sampson's coaching.

      Now it's time to meet the new challenge that Lin himself has pointed out: how to jumpstart this sputtering offense!

    3. I know right

      This Kevin Sampson doesn't do his research. He is as CLUELESS as MCFAIL.

      Sure, Lin will not turn the ball over if he doesn't get to touch the ball. What great mind Sampson has

    4. And Lin can move without the basketball, space the court, crash the offensive boards, receive passes, and shoot jumpers and layups when he gets the ball.

      Kelvin Sampson is a veteran pro coach who knows way more about basketball than you would ever dream of knowing, neph. Don't even delude yourself that you think you know more than him. KNOW YOUR PLACE.

      It's not up to the coaches to raise Lin's game. It's up to LIN to raise Lin's game. And he WILL.

    5. If Wade was forced to shoot 3pts all game long, how would he raise his game?

      - It would be difficult since that is not his greatest strength.

      Same case for Jeremy

      "Kelvin Sampson is a veteran pro coach who knows way more about basketball "

      - Who is he? Never heard of him; Great JOKE K

    6. I am amazed and appalled that a nobody like you thinks he's BETTER than a real life NBA assistant coach like Kelvin Sampson.

    7. @KHuang,

      You don't find anything at all wrong with:

      "I think the biggest challenge for Jeremy is going to be taking care of the ball and being able to defend bigger, stronger, quicker, more athletic point guards."

      Lin is one of the biggest, strongest and quickest guards in the NBA. Isn't it just a tad bizarre for Sampson to be talking as if Lin's athleticism is not one of his greatest assets but that he is instead at a disadvantage to most other other point guards?

  36. Hey Coach Sampson, his TO has reduced and his defense is good. You have successfully achieve your "biggest challenge". Or simply make sure that Jeremy don't touch the ball at all and his TO will be zero.

    1. Idiot Sampson

      Why does Jeremy always have to deal with DOUBTERS in his own team?

    2. Because Jeremy Lin can impact a game in ways other than scoring, that's why.

      Right now Jeremy Lin has a legitimate problem shooting jump shots. I don't see why Houston should keep plowing the ball into him so that he can keep missing shots.

      If anything, Houston's trying to PROTECT Lin. By letting Harden take the brunt of the turnovers and pressure, Lin is free to attack from the weak side. But if Lin is playing fraidy cat with his own jump shot, it doesn't matter whether Lin gets the ball or not if he can't produce.

      I 100% agree with McHale and Sampson's coaching. If I were Lin bricking shots, I'd be OK with being stuck in the corner until I got my shot back.

    3. khuang,

      just because we're not coaches doesn't mean we can't criticize coaching decisions... after all, we're fans. and coaches do make bad decisions - that's why some of them get fired all the time.

      however, regarding your post above - good take, khuang.

      lin is absolutely contributing in other ways by playing D and making smart passes, getting rebounds, etc. his shot will come back, and when it does we'll see a different game on the court.

      all players go through slumps - but it's magnified on the rockets when jeremy (or james) go through them because they have no other offensive options. they almost had it in ppat the other night with him going off on the 3's. kobe goes through his 2 for 15 nights but they have gasol and others picking up the slack once in a while. i thought kobe played one of his best game in game 7 against the C's where he didn't have his shot but racked up assists and found a way to contribute.

      at this time, without his shot, he can't just take the ball and charge into the lane aggressively. they're not moving the ball fast enough to catch the defense being out of position. their plodding pace in ball movement allows the defense to reset itself time and time again. i'm confident that once they get the system down the ball will move much faster and thus exploit the defenses much faster.

  37. This thread has been HIJACKED.

    Thanks to neph's Spurs homer anti Lin hatemongering, this forum has become TOXIC.

    There's too much meanspirited disrespect of NBA professionals here. I am a NBA fan and am disgusted by the hate spewed here toward the NBA professionals that I follow.

    I'll come back when this forum is cleaned up. I won't be associated with this place if it continues to spew vile epithets toward the NBA and its fans.

    1. Cara and KHuang, you both got to stay!

    2. Cara, I'll be back once Administration steps in and stops the hatemongering.

      I am here to enjoy Jeremy Lin and discuss his game, not participate in Spurs haterade of all nonSpurs things including Lin and the Rockets.

    3. Dude, relax. I don't see anything anti-Lin or "hatemongering" about neph's posts. You may disagree with his comments, but that is a far cry from how you are characterizing them.

      There is plenty of room for us all here.

    4. Unlike you, I respect the professionalism of the NBA and its players.

      I'm not going to support neph's unending disrespect of the NBA and its fans.

      You do whatever you want. But this escalating hatred perpetuated by neph is UNCOUTH. I won't be part of it.

    5. KHuang, but if you go, you are doing exactly what those haters want to do. Don't forget you are here to fight against racism, prejudice and all the unfairness against Lin, Lin fans and Asians. Those people are here to divide Lin fans and don't let their mission accomplished!

    6. Alright.

      Cara and via and janelin and Mr Chuckles, you all WIN.

      All of you are right. SOMEBODY has to stand up not just for Lin, but for Lin fans.

      True Lin fans like myself and you guys are not a deranged lot that hate McHale and everybody that Lin is working with. I don't agree with neph and his cronies trying to hijack this place and make Lin fans look like haters because we're NOT.

      I deeply respect the NBA and its employees. Just as I'll stand up for Lin, I'll stand up for my favorite pro basketball league in the world.

      Thanks guys for setting me straight. Even I lose the way sometimes.

    7. Cara, people who have different opinions are far from "haters" and they certainly aren't trying to divide Lin fans. If anything, it is comments like these are that are dividing fans. I mean I don't see folks who are even moderately critical of Lin lumping others into a group to divide.

      But I have seen folks lump people like neph and eb5 into the "anti-Lin" camp. Now THAT is divisive. Is it not?

      And KH, "Unlike you"? Really?

      We are all Lin fans here whether you believe it or not. And we all want him to do well. And we all express that in different ways. But like the great philosopher, Rodney King once said, "Can't we all just get along?"

    8. I don't know how far back you go on this place, but suffice it to say that those guys' anti Lin tendencies are well documented not just by me but by others.

      And divisive? If it comes to standing in the way of those who flame the NBA and its fans, YOU BET I'M DIVISIVE.

      You shouldn't side with those who hate the town of Houston and everything associated with it. At the least, it makes you seem like a hater too.

    9. KHuang, never quit the good fight if you know it is the right thing to do.

      Many of us appreciate what you always bring to this forum, to always be positive in JLin and always see the potential of what could be despite the obvious struggle. Perhaps that's why you're a good teacher :D

      Take your own advice not to be baited by the haters. I don't think neph and other critical fans are necessarily real haters but they fail to see the positives more so than the negatives. I truly hope they know if too much negativity will affect other fans.

      A real fan stays when EVERYONE else leaves. And we know you are a real fan. Stay for us, KHuang!

    10. KHuang leave, stand up for yourself by not letting your friends joke around with your ethnicity, then come back and punk the haters on the forum like you normally do.

    11. Good advice, Glenn.

      I "left", got PUNKED by my friends here (including YOU), and am "back".

      I'm a lot less PC about race than most people, believe it or not.

    12. Mr-chuckles, you are obviously not here long enough to recognize who are Lin fans or who are pretended Lin fans who want to give Lin and his fans a bad name. Lin fans don't need to love everything Lin related and we welcome different opinions. But there are some people here who self proclaimed themselves as Lin fans and then deliberately said something as they have no ideas anything about nba. They just want to give out a general image of Lin fans as a group who are fanatics who don't watch and understand basketball and all Lin fans have to be Melo, Harden, Woodson, Morey, McHale, Knicks and Rockets haters in which true Lin fans are not!

    13. KHuang, I've been here since Lin signed with the Warriors (my home town team). I've seen much of what has been going on here. I am not siding with anyone. If I was siding with the folks you don't appreciate, why would I encourage you to stick around?

      I am trying to be neutral and a bit of peacemaker (you can call me Switzerland) and add a little objectivity. You're right, this board can be toxic at times, but whether you want to admit it or not, you are half of the problem.

      If you don't want it to be toxic, try not to take what others say (that you don't agree with) so personally. They are just opinions. Lots of people post stuff I don't agree and that is cool. Free country.

    14. I actually AGREE with you, Chuckles.

      Only one thing I disagree on. I'm MORE than half the problem in toxicity!

      When I see NBA pros or Lin fans being hated on, I come to their defense. I usually go at my opponents harder than they go at me!

      You have superb advice. I probably won't end up following it, though!

    15. Also, I can't speak for everyone, but as a Lin fan we don't have to hate black people. In fact self proud Asians don't hate black, white or any other color. Those who do are having inferiority complex in my opinion. We only hate those black people who hate Asians!

      And some people with comments like "I am Asian. Lin is not quick and athletic. Asians are less athletic than blacks..." or "Lin can't play so many minutes like normal nba starters because Asians don't have black people's type of body. I am Asian I know..." or "I am Asian too so I am not a hater or a racist" are some self hated Asian people or haters who are self proclaimed Asians I am talking about...

    16. Tell you guys what? Let's put a moratorium on the use of the word, "hate" and its favorite cousin, "hater". Maybe just until Saturday. It might render some of us here mute, but it might just be a good exercise in getting along.

    17. @ mr-chuckles

      Sometimes the panicky "constructive" criticisms can be a bit too much, like we're on defcon1 or something. And there's always faux-fans who are just waiting for their cue to pile on. Before you know it, it's become a wave of blame-mongering.

      Some people try to head this off the pass.

      "the word, "hate" and its favorite cousin, "hater".

      -Don't know if censorship is the key...[I think people can tell if the word is being used frivolously or not. Its misuse hurts the credibility of the misuser more than anything.]

      "It might render some of us here MUTE, but it might just be a good exercise in getting along."

      - This sounds...not good.

    18. Believe me, I am not encouraging censorship. But I am encouraging exercising some voluntary and temporary restraint from using some of the more inflamatory words in our vocabulary in hopes of staving off knee-jerk comments that escalate into flame wars which quite frankly no one here enjoys.

    19. @ mr-chuckles

      :) I appreciate your point.
      Let's encourage ALL sides to practice some restraint. [Let those who would escalate threads into flame wars, overtly or DISINGENUOUSLY, be called out. I'm sure people are wise to what's what.]

  38. Damn I wish the Rockets have someone like Batum. He could guard 1-4 and shoot the 3 ball and is a difference maker at both ends.

    1. A post scorer is better. The Rockets offense is just plain ugly. Too many 3 pointers.

    2. or a competent roll man for Harden and Lin.

    3. Well, I did repeatedly predict this summer that opponents would jam the Rockets perimeter because the frontcourt couldn't score.

      Running a pick and roll would mean that Lin or Harden would be doubled every time. Indeed, that's what's happening.

      Lin can solve this by hitting a few jumpers. I trust he will.

  39. Also, I disagreed with some people saying that Lin's Asian trip affected his training and shooting. Actually I suspect Lin probably overtrained and over practiced in the summer, training camp and in his off days as well. That's why his knee is still not 100%. He is not getting enough rest period. That also explained why he seemed to perform better even in a tight and condensed schedule like last year but performed worse whenever after a few days rest. Lin needs to learn to take it easy and relax more in off days and maybe even goes to night club with Harden lol.

    1. That's probably true, Cara. Didn't McHale or Sampson mention that they had to keep Jeremy and his trainer away from the gym at night from practicing his shooting?

      He can take a page from Steve Nash's book to take a nap before game time. More rest and less night clubs! lol

    2. Indeed JLin's pre-game routine includes napping. [Phil Wagner is very big on getting enough rest.]

      He's been playing the piano at night. Don't know how relaxing this is for a perfectionist like him, lol.

      Clubbing [also, to bond with the guys] is not so bad. I guess none of his team mates are gamers..?

    3. Lin must've been shacking up on this Asia trip with Goran Dragic, Russell Westbrook, and Steve Nash.

      Those guys are bricking shots just as badly as Lin is. Dragic was shooting like 39% compared to Lin's 36%!

  40. Lin's summer training schedule was published. He was doing two sessions, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Each session was a couple hours, I think. This is not overtraining whatsoever. In fact, it right in line with the training volume of overachievers in other fields. For example, a study at top musical university in the US showed the the highest performers trained twice a day for 1 1/2 hours per session. Lots of students trained far more than that, but were not among the elite.