Thursday, November 22, 2012

Rockets vs Knicks Game #13 Pregame Thread

With the Knicks in town, there's a lot to read:

'Exposed' Lin not happy with Rockets performance

Rockets' Lin ready to 'play his heart out' vs. Knicks

Ultimate Rockets » Jeremy Lin learning from lumps

SLAM ONLINE | » JR Smith Says Raymond Felton More Unselfish Than Jeremy Lin

NY Knicks drop guard in visit with now less sensational ex-teammate and current Houston Rocket Jeremy Lin - NY Daily News

Lin: Melo partnership would've worked - Knicks Blog - ESPN New York

Popper: Linsanity cools down as Jeremy Lin takes his lumps in Houston : page 1 -

JLin interview:


  1. Man, I was doing so good staying away from all the negative Lin media. I. Must. Not. Read. Anymore. Of. Your. Links.

  2. Felton vs Lin should be a fun match-up, *if* Lin's coaches let him work.

    I like Felton. When the Knicks traded for Anthony in Feb 2011, I said this about him: "The toughest loss is Raymond Felton. The most important cog in Mike D'Antoni's system is a skilled floor general and orchestrator, which has been missing from the team since D'Antoni came to New York. Felton filled the role admirably and endeared himself to New York as a tough, professional leader with unexpected athleticism and advanced point guard skills. Felton was as responsible for the Knicks' improvement as Amare Stoudemire. His steady personality had a lot to do with the solid character of the team. Most importantly, he proved he had the point guard chops to run D'Antoni's system. It remains to be seen whether Billups will be able to pick it up."

    Scoring and shooting aren't Felton strengths (which makes me believe his scoring role this season was originally designed with Lin in mind), but in terms of over-all game, Felton is as good as any PG that Lin has faced this season.

    Felton is a tough, skilled PG with a nice handle and good straight-line speed. But he's not as quick nor explosive as Lin. Felton lacks the extra gear that Lin has. They've faced each other before. In their only meeting last season, Lin thoroughly outclassed a fatter Felton in the Knicks beatdown of the Blazers in the 1st post-D'Antoni game. Lin's modest stat line that night reflects the blow-out, but anyone who watched the game will recall that Lin did whatever he wanted against Felton and an embarrassingly bad Blazers team.

    Lin should still be quicker than an in-shape Felton, and if his coaches free him to attack, Lin should be able to do damage against Felton.

    After Felton, Kidd is slow, but he has tricks. You may recall the physical adjustment he made defending Lin in their 2nd meeting last season. That said, Lin is wiser, Kidd is slower, and Kidd will most likely defend Harden.

    I'm curious how Lin will do against Prigioni, if they match up. Prigioni is also old and slow, but he has Team Argentina tricks.

    Team vs team, the Knicks are (a lot) older, slower, and smaller than the Rockets, but they're also a smart veteran team that plays good defense and disciplined offense. They're coming off a close loss in Dallas, so they'll be extra motivated to grab a make-up win in Houston.

    Riding Harden won't be enough. If Lin is allowed to play his game, though, the Rockets have a legit shot at beating the Knicks.

    1. Hey Eric, who will you be rooting for in this match up? Will it feel bittersweet no matter who wins?

    2. Add: If you're curious, I quoted myself from here:

    3. wifflewiffle,

      I'll be rooting for Lin, of course.

      I don't care much about which team wins, though a Rockets win makes Lin look better if he's a contributor to it. I care about how well Lin does, whether his team wins or loses.

      As I said to via in a previous thread, my bias isn't a Knicks bias. It's a Lin bias with the recognition that the Knicks were the best fit for Lin in the short term for this current critical foundational developmental stage of his career. My understanding of what Lin would have had with the Knicks this season serves to sharpen my criticism of what the Rockets are giving him.

      I use Lin's record with the Knicks, where he played well for 2 different coaches and their systems, as the best frame of reference to judge how well the Rockets are using him.

      Given that D'Antoni and Woodson (in only 7 games) provided 2 different working models for how to use Lin properly, the Rockets coaches really have no excuse to misuse Lin.

    4. "Felton..... with unexpected athleticism and advanced point guard skills." - Eric

      Felty was picked 5th overall in 2005 and ahead of Deron. Plus - when he was with the Knicks last time, he was in his prime as a young veteran at age 26.

    5. ztrta,

      Felton's reputation from playing with the bad Bobcats wasn't as high by the time he joined the Knicks, though. He was viewed as somewhere between bust and average and on his way to journeyman status.

    6. Me: "I don't care much about which team wins"

      Amendment. As far as Rockets vs Knicks, I don't care who wins, but I do care whether the Rockets win enough games over-all for Lin to gain play-off experience.

    7. Thanks for the analysis. I don't think the rockets are going to approach this game any differently than the other games they've played, ie, Lin's role isn't going to change.

      I expect Lin to have an OK game, although i'd love for him to completely outplay Felton/Kidd/Prigs. *wishing, hoping, praying!

    8. Yep, I do want Lin to prove the Knicks were wrong for not matching the 25/3 offer. Lin doing well in the head-on match-ups with the Knicks won't be dispositive, but it's a good place to start.

    9. The Knicks never like Jeremy Lin, contrary to what Eric says.

      They rewarded him by taking not just the ball away from him, but his spot on the roster.

      I can NEVER agree with Eric's fantasy that the Knicks would be better for Lin.

      I'd take $25 million Lin sitting on the Houston bench than $1 million Lin on the Knicks probably being waived at this point after not playing a single minute for Eric's favorite coach Mike Woodson!

    10. @KHuang, I love your enthusiasm for Lin but right now, the Knicks would be a much better fit for Lin. They actually have more ball movement than HOU and their PG's actually get to play PG.

      I know HOU keeps saying that they're committed to Lin but I don't buy it. If they could trade Lin for a complimentary piece to Harden, they'd do it in a heartbeat. Or maybe i'm secretly hoping Lin doesn't stay in HOU long term because I don't like their ignorant (& sometimes racist) fans, and the way the coaching staff is misusing him?! Not sure...

    11. The question to Morey and Alexander that they can't answer honestly:

      If you had acquired James Harden first, would you still have made an offer to Jeremy Lin?

      If yes, would you still have made a 25/3 offer to Lin?

    12. You don't get it, k.smith.

      Contrary to what you and Eric insist, there are no "what ifs" in the NBA.

      The Knicks don't want Jeremy Lin. Never wanted him to begin with. Speculating about how he "would" be better than the Knicks is PURE UNADULTERATED FANTASY.

      The harsh reality is that Lin has played ZERO minutes for the Knicks this year. That's what Woodson's coaching has done for Lin. Sampson over Woodson any day this season.

    13. Eric, there is no fantasy answer to your fantasy question about James Harden.

      Fantasy is fantasy, reality is reality. The two don't mix.

    14. KHuang,

      It's certainly real that the Rockets are using Lin differently than the Knicks used Lin.

    15. It's even more real that the Rockets are using Lin differently this season than the way the Knicks are using Lin now.

      Every season is different, every team is different. Even Lin is not the same Lin he was a few months ago, for various reasons.

    16. Agreed, and not for the better, unfortunately.

      True, the Rockets are different than the Knicks, and the Rockets can't replicate for Lin the advantages that the Knicks offered in structure.

      However, the Rockets coaches should at least be able to learn from the examples of how to use Lin set by the Knicks coaches. Instead, it's amazing that the Rockets actually seem to be worse at using Lin now at 12 games into the season than they were at the start of the season.

    17. No, the Rockets coaches have NOTHING to learn from the NY coaches in handling Lin.

      Lin doesn't have a single partner capable of running a pick and roll with. It's utterly impossible on this Rockets team. Asik can barely catch the ball, and it's thanks to Lin that Asik scores his points.

      The way Lin's been bricking shots, it doesn't matter how he's deployed. I still feel that moving him off the ball is the best way to keep him on the court for 30+ minutes if he's utterly incapable of hitting a jump shot.

      Last year, I argued that Lin could play any guard role in any system. The caveat was that his jump shot was not as broken as it is now, thanks to Doc Scheppler's overcoaching in a method that clearly doesn't work for Lin.

      A Jeremy Lin that can hit his jumpshots is a Jeremy Lin that's EASILY one of the best guards in the league.

    18. k.smith: "the Knicks would be a much better fit for Lin. They actually have more ball movement than HOU and their PG's actually get to play PG."

      FYI, my 2 fantasy sets if Lin had been a Knick:

      1. Anthony in his signature mid-post position to score, outlet, or skip pass - Kidd with Anthony on the strong side in his signature position as post feeder, outlet-3 shooter, swing passer - Lin set up on the weakside to attack immediately from a direct skip from Anthony or Kidd swing pass.

      2. Lin/Anthony 1/4 pick-and-roll. Woodson actually ran Lin/Anthony pick-and-rolls last season. They were rough but improving when Lin went down. The set would have been more effective this season with reps, but more so with Anthony playing the 4. A 1/3 pick-and-roll with Lin and Anthony works. But a 1/4 pick-and-roll with Lin and Anthony opens up options.

  3. It's possible that this may even be a game where Toney Douglas finally plays more minutes than Lin.

    No matter what, I want to see Lin ATTACK in whatever minutes he gets in whatever role he gets. I'd like to see him jack up 10 shots, even if he misses all of them.

    Lin needs to get back to being a SCORER. Enough of this facilitating stuff.

    1. I wonder about Douglas's motivation level to get back at the Knicks.

      After all, Lin isn't a Knick because of a big contract. Douglas isn't a Knick because they dumped him as a salary matcher in the Camby trade.

      Between Lin and Douglas, Douglas has better motivation to exact revenge on his old team.

    2. In watching people complain (justifiably) about the way coaches have taken Lin off the ball, I remember what happened with Jason Kidd and the Mavericks.

      Coach Avery Johnson sent Jason Kidd to the corner. Kidd openly complained about his role, but his shooting was so bad Johnson had no choice.

      Jason Kidd went out and hired a shooting coach. While Kidd never became a great shooter, he did shoot just well enough for Rick Carlisle to use him to win the championship.

      Jeremy Lin has shooting woes right now that are totally solvable. I keep saying that unlike Kidd, Lin has amply demonstrated that he can score in the NBA. Thus he has the scoring capacity that Kidd never had.

      If the coaches really intend to squeeze Lin off the court, Lin can squeeze back by looking for his own shot every time he catches the basketball. That's how he should be playing to begin with, even if he was the primary facilitator on the team!

    3. So.... We should hope for a change of coach? :D

    4. Not necessarily.

      Let's hope for a change in LIN.

      Pass first point guards generally don't survive in the NBA. Even the greatest pass first point guard in the game, Jameer Nelson of Orlando, knows when to attack with the basketball. Nelson often gets criticized for being "selfish", which I laugh at because Nelson is as unselfish as anybody can possibly be in the NBA!

      All Lin has to do is shift his mentality from passer to scoring aggressor. That alone would dramatically shift his fortunes, likely as much as fixing his broken jump shot. ATTACK!

    5. @KHuang:

      Indeed. And we are already seing signs of that. Lin has been attacking the basket more lately. He has gotten quicker too. Not 100% but he knows it and he is working on it (he mentioned that in one of the interviews above).

      As long as Lin manages to get double doubles every now and then he will be fine. If you guys look at the boxscore - if Lin (and some of his teammates) had been just a little better shootingwise - he would have had a hand full of double doubles by now.

    6. This is why I feel Lin has been poised for a breakout game at any point now, willydilly.

      It's obvious that the Rockets want to keep Lin's minutes around 30-35. I think that's an excellent strategy that will preserve Lin's health and likely keep him going for 82 games.

      During those minutes, Lin needs to put up at least 10 shot attempts. If the team is playing him at shooting guard, then Lin needs to play his role and SHOOT.

      I firmly believe that if Lin continues to put up enough shots, his scoring will rise naturally. Even with that broken jump shot, Lin can still EASILY score double figures as long as he remains aggressive for those 30-35 minutes.

    7. What concerns me is that harden has the chance to miss shots and jeremy not. Harden is not a good defender but he's not benched cause his man scores 20+ points.

      If jeremy doesn't feel the trust of the coach it's normal he loses confidence. I'm struggling if i miss shots i go to bench ... I fear to take the next one.

      I keep sayin same things: if the pg is struggling why he's playing sg? Give him the ball and let the shots to another. Only if jeremy missed open shots with his man test his shot then i'd agree with the coach. And harden has had his own nights too but he never has benched in crunch time...

      Fact is neither Mchale nor sampson have faith in Lin and you can see that not in words but in acts. And the poor jeremy is paying the whole thing. I'm still confident our guy we'll come back stronger .... In houston or elsewhere.... Under sampson/Mchale or whoever.... He's been dealing with worse situations ....

    8. I think we've seen enough by now where it's fair to call it as we see it: There's a double standard for Harden and Lin.

    9. Yeah, and Lin's gonna be the one the benefits long term from that double standard!!!

      Harden has some very big holes in his game on defense, shooting, and turnovers. He won't repair them because the coaches are focused on nitpicking Lin.

      Lin has already evolved into an All Star caliber defender and passer. Now he'll evolve into an All Star caliber scorer - and the racial double standard will get Lin there FASTER!!!

      I've suffered the racial double standard all my life. I also ended up outlasting and outperforming every other person that was racially coddled at my expense!!!

    10. Yeah i think that too :D i've read on clutchfans harden is a regular strip club person ... And there were fans who are happy about that!

      Can you imagine a chemistry with jeremy? Someday harden will be like arenas and Lin like nash or stockton

    11. It would be totally ironic and funny if ex-Knicks JLin and Toney Douglass went off on the Knicks today to lead the Rockets to an upset win over the championship-bound Knickerbockers?

    12. @Spotless:

      Youre are right and to my suprise Sampson has noticed it too. In one of the above linked interviews Sampson said that eventhough Harden (and basicly the whole team) has been struggling just as bad as JLin - all the spotlight was on JLin. He said that he is going to continue to help JLin build confidence... sounds fair to me.

  4. 10 points- this is my target for Jeremy Lin. Talent, hard work and preservence will pay off eventually. No matter what other people said or how his shot is broken, there is no way Lin is a 30% shooter. Law of average has to prevail sooner or later. Let it start against the stupid Knicks!

    1. Yeah, that's realistic.

      For other people who think Lin's going to do a complete 180 tonight, it's not going to happen, he doesn't have that kind of freedom with Sampson.

    2. The low scoring is one thing, but in the 2 games since his 11 and 10 assist games, including the Harden sick game, Lin hasn't been given the chance to make plays as a pass-first PG either. Instead, Lin's been taken off the ball, then out of the game.

    3. Lin can EASILY turn himself around, at any point.

      It's a volume thing. Put up the shots, don't worry about the percentages. It isn't as if James Harden is shooting all that much better than Lin in terms of sheer percentage!!!

      Just ATTACK and the game will come to Lin. He's too passive.

  5. honestly, lin looked slow and passive from the very start of the bulls if his mind was totally out of it. just something about his body language after watching him the past year. you could tell it was going to be a bad game..

    hope i don't get that same feeling watching the start of tonight's game. he better bring it all!

    1. I noticed that, too. The look on his face. His body language. Pressing.

      You know what it called to mind? That clip of Lin as a Warrior where he's rushing and stumbling, and loses control of his dribble for a turnover.

      We saw some of that tightness last season before Lin broke out, too. He's feeling the pressure.

      As we've noted, Lin has risen before and we know he has it in him to do it again. The Knicks gave him a fair shot to work through the tightness until he broke through. But the Warriors didn't give him a fair shot to work through it. The Rockets, with the same coach and GM, didn't give him a fair shot their 1st time together. Will the Rockets give him one this time? 25/3 of the owner's investment says they will, but it's disconcerting to see his role being shrunk by the coaches.

    2. The Knicks did NOT give Lin a chance to work out the tightness, Eric.

      He was one week from being waived. But the slew of injuries gave Lin his chance, and he seized it. Lin's play had nothing to do with him getting a chance.

      The Rockets have played Lin 30+ minutes a game. Even Kelvin Sampson knows that the Rockets cannot survive long term at Toney Douglas starting or playing more than Lin, although Sampson may need a "refresher" if he's dumb enough to try that.

      No matter what chance Lin gets or how little he plays, he is to attack on the court.

    3. @Eric...the coach will influence a player's role. Sometimes it is because the coach sees a "particular" type of player as successful and anyone who doesn't look like that type won't be viewed favorably. Human bias I think ....J Lin will have his work cut out but he seems confident that he can break out of the slump.


    1. The only lumps Lin are taking are scoring lumps due to his broken jump shot form.

      In all other aspects of the game, Lin is playing at his peak level. I see no room whatsoever for improvement in ANY aspect of Lin's game outside of scoring.

      Even with that broken shot, Lin is good enough to find his scoring touch. When that happens, Lin will be the best all around GUARD in the NBA!

    2. Ok, my writing got the better of me there.

      What I should've written was that Lin could be the best guard all around guard he could be in the NBA, not the best guard period!

      my bad

    3. I don't know what games you've been watching KHuang but I've watched all the Rockets games this season and there is a LOT to be worked upon. For one, his lateral quickness, he was blown by soo easily from other point guards like Parker, Lilliard, heck even during the game against Nate Robinson and they had to bench Lin to put in Douglas. I wasn't happy they did that, but the way Douglas played was amazing on both ends.

      Lin just is lacking that Linsanity urge on both ends of the floor. I mean there was instances of it in games, but recently its been less and less. He's shooting terribly, when he drives into the paint he gets trapped and loses the ball, his assists #s are way down, there is just a lack of team chemistry right now and its not jelling with the Rockets as much as with the Knicks.

      I'm not going to say Lin is a better fit for the Knicks or anything, I'm going to say if Lin wants to be team floor general he has to earn the respect of all the players and the way he's playing, Douglas is slowly creeping back if he keeps pulling those #s he did.

      I think what Lin needs to do is just play with a higher sense of urgency, like its his last game in the NBA, he's playing like its a pickup game while other teams are really fighting for the win.

    4. I didn't really want to trust the eye test so I went to look at Lin's stats between his time at GSW and HOU... and his offensive efficiency is worse than at his time at GSW by almost every measure. We know from the NYK period that an increase in USG% doesn't usually reduce Lin's efficiency so it cannot be explained by the difference in MPG and USG% between GSW and HOU. Regressing from Linsanity numbers is understandable but regressing from his numbers at GSW speaks to something deeper.

      That said, his offensive efficiency still beats Toney Douglas' in nearly every area, although, disturbingly, TD's 3P% has recently exceeded Lin's. Lin made 8 shots on 35 attempts while TD made 7 on 27 attempts.

      Also, did you know TD has made 22 out of 22 free throw attempts this season!? I wasn't expecting to see that.

  7. Thought: torque.

    In terms of scoring his way out of the doghouse, the simple solution is Lin raining mid-range and deep jumpers and lighting up the scoreboard. If he does that, he'll make the coaches' decision for them. But he's always been a streaky shooter, and he's struggling with his shot more than usual. So the simple solution is a hard one.

    The next best option is Lin reviving the fearless slashing creative scoring he relied on heavily as a Knick with great success.

    This season, we've seen Lin reach the basket on fast breaks and off the dribble in the half court. A few floaters, bank shots. Good stuff. But the volume of his inside scoring game is down significantly, which begs the question:

    If Lin can do it a few times, then why isn't he doing it more and throughout the game?

    We've blamed the coaches for taking the ball away from Lin, and they have. In fact, they've taken him out of games altogether. Yet we've also noted Lin seems to be the only Rockets ball handler who's reluctant to call his own number. It's hard to believe his orders in that respect are different than everyone else's.

    Then there's the Jazz game where Harden was sick and we expected a Linsanity-style take-over (recalling Lin's last Jazz game where Anthony tweaked his groin early and Stoudemire missed for his brother). Instead, Lin started with a pretty 10 on 4-7 but ended the game with 13 on 5-15 in a confusing 2nd half.

    A common refrain is Lin is recovering the speed, quickness, and explosiveness he had as a Knick. And when he does, he'll be that same fearless slashing creative scorer again. His outside shoot should also improve as his lift becomes consistent.

    When he does complete his knee recovery, though, I wonder if he'll recover another key component of his inside scoring game: torque.

    Looking at Lin highlights from last season, there was a lot of aggressive jump stopping, twisting, herky-jerky, and movement against the grain in Lin's inside scoring. It's no wonder Lin suffered a 'wear and tear' knee injury with the extra pressure he placed on his knees beyond the expected running, jumping, and change of directions of basketball. My sense of Lin's moves this season, under the basket and off the dribble, is less variety than last season. He's more careful and cut out the torque-heavy stuff.

    So back to the notion of Lin scoring his way out of the doghouse by reviving the fearless slashing creative scoring he relied on heavily as a Knick with great success. He can drive on his man now, if less easily, and his effectiveness should pick up as Lin recovers speed, quickness, and explosiveness, but what's the effect on Lin's game if he's removed the knee-crushing torque from his game for good?

    Something to think about.

    1. The reason Lin can't score inside is because teams are waiting for him down low, meeting him at the rim.

      The answer is exactly what you proposed, Eric. Fire those midrange jumpers and make them.

      Lin is so talented that he can fix virtually any problem in his game. Fixing this midrange jump shooting problem will be EASY for him because he's naturally a good shooter!

      In preseason, teams blitzed Lin with a double team up high and sent a defender to meet him at the rim. So even if Lin was the primary ballhandler, his scoring would still be stifled and his stats would not look different. That would be no different if he were on the Knicks.

      Lin is learning the midrange game. He'll have it figured out any game now. I won't be surprised if Lin eventually masters the midrange to the point where people are like "Of course Lin is a great midrange scorer", just like they're now saying "Of course Lin is a pass first point guard who's great on defense!"

    2. He himself have said about his leg muscles and knee...which they'll use some explosive exercises to get himself back to his original shape. It has always been about recovering well and getting back to 100% vertical and speed bursts.


  9. JR Smith giving his opinion about how Felton is more unselfish than JLin!

    That is frigging hilarious.

    You know we live in the End Times when JR Smith of all people is trying to posture as champion of unselfish basketball. ;-)

    JR Smith is the same guy that is one of the great shameless chuckers and knuckleheads in all of basketball.

  10. This game has the potential to be a break out game for Lin and a big win for the Rockets.

    The Knicks lost at Dallas. It's the day after a big holiday. The Knicks' players seem to be overly confident. These are the perfect conditions for a burst of Linsanity.

    1. Unfortunately, the converse is true. The Knicks after starting out 6-0 are now 2-2 since, with one of those victories coming over dreadful New Orleans (and in a game where Anthony Davis didn't play) and the other was a yawner over Indy where only Carmelo Anthony played well (and that is assuming that going 9-22 with 0 assists is "playing well" for a PF). Now the Knicks have to prove that their great start wasn't due to emotion at the beginning of the season and they won't go back to being satisfied and their old underachieving ways. The Rockets are as good a team as any to try to get another winning streak going and proving that the old dog head cases on that team can learn new tricks, and that Woodson is the right guy to teach them.

  11. While what the Rockets are doing - and what the Knicks did - to Lin is/was less than ideal and it is frustrating for Lin fans - as well as fans of basketball and fans of things that are just and right as opposed to bias and unfairness - the result will be Lin emerging from this a better player. There is no such thing as a perfect player, and further being still a young, inexperienced guy in NBA terms, Lin has areas of his game that needs work. Had the Rockets catered to Lin's strengths, it would have made rooting for Lin and the Rockets a lot easier, and gotten Lin better numbers and more headlines (and quite possibly more wins ... I think the Rockets would be doing very well right now with Harden as a wingman #2 guy, as his game and personality does seem more suited to that role ... to borrow KHuang's theory, Harden is most definitely a beta male, a Type B personality, a follower - a very good one but still a follower - and not a leader) but long term this may well turn out to be the best for Lin (if not necessarily for the Rockets or Harden).

    Being a successful NBA player is not this mystical mythical thing where you need the perfect ingredients of coaching, city, teammates, ownership etc. to succeed. Succeeding in the NBA is about A) athleticism, B) work ethic and C) opportunity. Lin obviously has the A) and B) and right now armed with a starting job and none too insignificant contract he is getting the opportunity. So, ultimately Lin will succeed. It is inevitable. Basketball is ability, skill, hard work and smarts. Lin has all 4 on defense, and on offense he only needs to work on the skill of jump-shooting, both outside spot up shooting and mid-range pull up, quick and turnaround jumpers. (A finger roll would be nice.) Now it won't be easy. Lin will be competing against guys that are just as hard working, smart, skilled and talented night in and night out. But it can be done and will be done.

    1. 100% agree with this. Athleticism is always number one. It allows you to be a better player. Skills can always be practiced and is easier to develop.

    2. @unknown, but is JLIN an alpha male? I dont think JLin as alpha either


  12. The people who believe otherwise, the people who want Lin to be traded to another city and play in another system for another coach (i.e. Los Angeles and D'Antoni) are actually endorsing the Lin detractors (some of whom are indeed motivated by known or unknown anti-Asian bigotry or stereotypical thinking). Saying that Lin needs a particular coach or system to excel is the same as calling him a gimmick, a system player or one trick pony, which is akin to how Jason Terry dismissed Jeremy Lin. Now Lin already disproved Terry's theory by playing great under Mike Woodson, but Lin picking up and excelling in the role that the Rockets have (foolishly) forced him into would be the final blow.

    Right now, we are going to see who the real Jeremy Lin fans are. It is easy to be someone's fan when they are putting up big numbers and being a media sensation. But continuing to root for Lin while he is going through the down side of becoming a big time NBA player when you didn't come into the NBA as a high draft pick (something that other guys have had to go through) shows that you actually think that Lin has NBA caliber natural ability. And that is what it boils down to. Do you believe that Jeremy Lin has top level athletic ability or not? Based on what I have seen from Lin, I do. It is frustrating to see that ability wasted by the Rockets, but as soon as Lin "gets" it as a scorer in the role the Rockets have him in now, that ability will be applied to it, just as his ability showed in D'Antoni's system. Granted, it will still be a waste - as Lin SHOULD be running this team - but that will be something that will help Lin grow as a player, and will make him better able to handle having the leading role (that he should already have now!) in the future.

    Again, it goes back to the question: do you believe that Lin is a great or even above average NBA athlete? I do, and people who believe this like me are the ones who have nothing to worry about. It is the people who deep down who do not that are filled with worry and angst right now. I admit ... I am frustrated with how the Rockets are USING Lin, but that has nothing to do with my estimation of Lin as an NBA player. (Because - after all - I was the one who said that Lin would be great in New York under Woodson. Not because of Woodson or the Knicks, but because of Lin's own ability.)

    1. Well said! Among other things, I support Jeremy because I believe that he has the athletic ability to be a great player.

    2. @wilc:

      Yes, that is what it comes down to. If you are a great athlete, you can use that athletic ability to be able to score in a variety of roles and ways. It is the mediocre athletes that need a niche. Lin is not a niche guy like a spot up shooter or a slasher. He has the ability to score and contribute in any number of ways. He just needs to learn the skills, and learn them against NBA defenses.

    3. You are right. Bad fans will turn on JLin - only true fans will stick with him (and the crazy people who only come here to bash him). As for me - I have always found it more exciting to see a young team grow than to watch an allstar team defeat the national team of... IDK... Zimbabwe?

      But - its nothing wrong about openly debating what coaches or teams would be right for JLin. Like you wrote in your post - right now they kind of waste his talent. Also - all the teamleaders and stars out there are trying to build "their" team - a coach that suits their style of play, teammates who support them - not challenge them. Thats basicly what Melo has done and that is why he is in a perfect envirement right now.

      A lot of people say that its JLins chance to grow and improve right now. But do we really want to see that kind of improvement?

      Think of Boris Becker. He was never the most athlectic allrounder out there. And yet - he had his strengths, he was smart, agressive and he was an ass - he forced his opponents into their weak spots - all the time - again and again. This is how he won his titles. Had a coach tried to turn him into a "better" player - he would have probably been worse.

  13. And learn Lin will. No doubt about it.

    Look forward to tonight's game. Let's cheer Lin on and not get too high or too low regardless of the outcome of the game. It's all a learning process for Lin and the Rockets.

  14. ...Just out of curiosity. J Lin is an alpha male and McHale is another one. What is Sampson?....I await your opinions.

    1. Definitely not an alpha. He's a follower, double-talker and opportunist.

      McHale is definitely the coach for Jeremy. He challenges him without shaking his confidence -- no way in hell McHale would have benched lin for Douglas in that OT game. Especially after Jeremy played so well in regulation.

    2. But that other assistant coach Chris Finch sounds like an alpha/leader/no BS guy. He's considered the "brains" of the coaching staff and works alongside with Jeremy like Kenny Atkinson used to.

      Finch was the awarded the head coaching position for Team Britain and did a nice job despite limited talent. Dave Blatt, the guy who coached Team Russia is another intelligent alpha-type who would be great for Jeremy (there was buzz of him being offered an NBA gig).

  15. The Knicks players get paid da big bucks.

    Jeremy Lin gets paid da big bucks.

    The fans including us are PAYING da big bucks to these criminals.

    MOVING ON. God bless you all!

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    2. If everyone WOKE UP and boycotted the NBA and stop watching + playing basketball, while replacing it with Table Tennis, then all the NBA players such as Kobe and Melo would be working at McDonalds while all the table tennis superstars would be the millionaires. It's all a free market decided by the fans like us. TRUTH.

    3. In a different world, Jeremy Lin would have been a badminton champion. He is so athletically gifted he could have been good at any sport he was introduced to.

      It's just that he ended up in an environment where basketball was popular so he ended up adapting to that.

      F*ck the barbaric sports like football, basketball, baseball that the savages prefer. I like chess and table tennis a lot more because you actually have to use mental and strategic finesse to be great at it rather than aggressive, barbaric, physicall like you see in American sports.

    4. "then all the NBA players such as Kobe and Melo would be working at McDonalds"

      OR they might have been lawyers and accountants. For this rant, you picked two bad examples. While Kobe and Melo are jerks who have had scandals in their personal lives, both men also did well in school - Kobe in particular - and would be college educated professionals were it not for sports. Moving on ...

      And the difference between badminton and tennis is what, exactly? And Americans do very well at tennis. Golf, ditto. Golf is a barbaric sport devoid of mental and strategic finesse that is aggressive, barbaric and physical? Americans do quite well at golf.

      Americans also do quite well at swimming, gymnastics, skating, track and field and other Olympic sports. How aggressive and barbaric is figure skating? Skiing? Or the 400 meter hurdles?

      Incidentally, there are sports that Americans aren't particularly well at that can also be considered aggressive, barbaric and physical. Example: soccer. The American men haven't done squat in the Olympics or the World Cup in soccer in who knows when. Another example: hockey. Can't even field NHL teams without foreigners.

      So next time you decide to go off on another baiting rant, at least try to be accurate? After all, Americans are even good at chess ...

  16. This is not true.. Michael Jordan was of the most athletic humans to ever live was a mediocre baseball player at the minor league level.

  17. @aircow:

    I think that Lin is. First off, by the way that he prefers to play the game ... I remember his comments to the New York Times that he prefers D'Antoni ball. Second, the confidence that he exudes. In that same article, he told the NY Times that while he preferred D'Antoni ball, he could excel in any system. (Remember, this was coming from a guy whose entire NBA starting experience was barely a dozen games.) Third ... the fact that he is where he is. A beta personality would have succumbed to bitterness and quit, or worse took on a victimized "me against the world" mentality, or worse still become a "dreamer" who would be happy to just be on an NBA roster instead of still fighting to be a starting NBA point guard. Even though I have frequently stated that I wanted Lin to stay with the Knicks, I say that his not accepting the Knicks' match of the initial offer sheet, getting the Rockets to submit a second and ultimately going to the Knicks was an alpha male type move. Also, while I agree that Harden was right to take the money and starring role that Houston offered him over chasing championships with OKC now and deferring his big payday until later, the former, more risky route in seeking what is supposed to be the main goal of every athlete - a championship - would have been an alpha male move. (I still remember when Deion Sanders took a fraction of what he could have gotten as a free agent in order to win a Super Bowl - his first championship at any level - with the 49ers. I compare that with Neil O'Donnell leaving a Super Bowl contender in the Steelers for a big contract with the Jets, only to publicly complain that his new team wasn't winning like his previous one did.)

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