Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Playoffs for Jeremy and the Rockets!

With the Rockets win and the Jazz loss, the Houston Rockets have clinched a playoff berth. Jeremy Lin will be making his historic playoff debut in less than two weeks!


  1. @ zxcvb, I've been ambivalent about whether Memphis or Denver is the better matchup (assuming Lawson will be 100%). I've gone back and forth about it.

    I think Memphis is a much better known quantity than Denver. I have a handle on what their offense and defense is about, and what the roles of each of the players is. (If Gasol plays more aggressively, they can be so strong.)

    Whereas with Denver, I think the total is greater than the sum of its parts, you know what I mean? It's not a team you can just look at their roster and have a good sense of what they can do and what their true ceiling is. It's an experiment of sorts. They might be devastating in a way that few have predicted. I'm deeply interested to see how they fare in the playoffs.

    Yeah, Denver's altitude advantage is mostly negated in a playoff series.

    1. I know what you mean -- Denver is even better than their record when you consider their slow start. But Memphis is better than their record as well -- now that there's no Rudy Gay (poor man's Melo) and more Mike Conley.

      I just think it's important not to be overly persuaded by regular season results. The last loss was the second game of a back-to-back in the altitude of Denver (with no adjustment time). And the game before that, Houston could have/would have won if McHale brought Jeremy back in sooner.

      The fact is, a banged up Lawson and no go-to superstar scorer is not a good recipe for playoff success. Memphis has the bigs to PUNISH the weak Rockets frontcourt (Asik and nobody else) and like I said, Conley is really stepping it up.

    2. These matchups are equally bad for the Rockets.

      Denver just SHUTS DOWN James Harden with Andre Iguodala and Corey Brewer. Plus, Kenneth Faried is a rebounding terror who outbangs the Rockets' rookie front line.

      Memphis has Randolph and Gasol who the Rockets big men are afraid of getting bodyslammed by. The Rockets bigs are so terrified of the Bruise Brothers that they don't make their customary cuts or play their customary defense.

      Neither team can stop Lin or even slow him down. He just goes out there and does whatever he wants against these two teams, the way a SUPERSTAR is expected to.

    3. How about going with a 3-guard lineup against the Nuggets? With Beverly, Lin, Harden and Parsons at PF?

      That would take Iggy off of Harden and/or force Wilson Chandler or Brewer onto Lin...which would be a major mismatch in Houston's favor.

    4. I'm not a big Parsons fan as people here know, but he'd do a better job staying on the Faried than the slow-footed Smith and Jones.

    5. zxcvb, that would not work.

      You would have 3 guys that cannot play defense, plus Chandler Parsons would be eaten alive on the boards if he played power forward.

      The concern isn't Lin drawing the best Nuggets perimeter defender, as Lin has repeatedly shredded Iguodala at will in isolation. The concern is Beverley and Harden and Parsons being easily attacked due to their inability to play minimal defense.

    6. That's true. I guess I thought you could at least turn the series into an "All-Star" game -- no defense, score-at-will, high-octane game in 120s. With a hobbled Lawson, that might be Houston's best bet...simply making it a scoring contest.

    7. KHuang, I heard the announcers repeatedly raving about Beverley's blocks, steals and rebounds are one the best among the bench players in the league. Are these stats not indicators of good defensive plays by Bev? His lack of court vision is obvious to me but he appears to be rather energetic.

    8. Good point KHuang, I wonder why Lin can drive past Igoudala at will while Harden gets shut down by Iggy...

      I think the key to beating the Nuggets is to play at a controlled pace, half court game. Whenever the Rockets slowed the tempo down and played defense they lead the game. It's only when they run and shoot 3's a lot that the Nuggets dominated the Rockets by playing fast break basketball.

    9. @janelin7
      I think what KHuang means, correct me if I'm wrong, is that Beverly may be very athletic when it comes to things speed and leaping ability, but his REACTION TIMES are very slow.

      A fat nerd who plays videogames all day can nonetheless have GREAT reaction times -- that's why they're good at videogames. However, even an Olympic caliber athlete can have slow reaction times -- it's all in the brain/nervous system. To be able to react to a quick first-step, change of direction, quick pass, etc..

    10. Yes, zxcvb, I read KHuang's comments on Bev reaction time. Iwas thinking what are the attributes for a player to be able to steal, rebound and block? If a player is slow to react, can he steal, rebound and block?

    11. Yes, if he's anticipating it. For example, if Beverly sees a player going up for a layup, he knows exactly where he's jumping...so his poor reaction times don't hurt him.

      But if, say, a PG fakes a shot and drives to the hoop, Beverly will be unable to recover in time. By contrast, we've all seen Jeremy recover after a fast PG "blows by" him...and then Jeremy forces a steal from the side or contests the shot from behind.

    12. ahh, it's the ability to anticipate. Thank you, zxcvb.

    13. I noticed the reason why Beverly gets alot of rebounds (offensive) is because he tends to stick around when his teammates shoot the ball. Lin on the other hand would speed back to defend and leave his position. There were several instances of this happening yesterday during the Phoenix game. Beverly also got some serious hops and I think he jumps higher than Lin. Yup, the Houston tandem announcers were such homers. They raved about Harden and Beverly like they were the next coming of Stockton and Malone. As they say it in NYC, "Nigga please!!!" Sorry for that burst but I had to say it. The Houston hometown announcers were like on Harden's jockstrap even after he commits TO after TO, which allowed Phoenix to hang around. Most of Harden's TO led to scores for Phoenix. They did give Lin a compliment about his speed though. The game yesterday really didn't have a good flow because Harden was being the PG and Lin was resort to shooting guard. Lin's shot was off yesterday. It seems like he had too much energy or something. It kept clanging off the back rim. I am just glad the Rockets made the playoffs. Amen.

    14. zxcvb and janelin7, you guys are seeing what I'm seeing every game.

      Beverley plays A LOT of minutes, far more than a D league player like him should.

      The higher minutes inflate his stats - and also inflate the stats of the other team.

      His slow reaction time is most apparent when he gets dribble attacked by opposing point guards. When a pathetically slow guy like Kendall Marshall who moves like he's 50 can go at Beverley and break down the entire Rockets defense, that's why I keep saying that Beverley doesn't even belong in the NBA. Every time opponents twitch a dribble in Bev's direction, the whole Houston defense collapses to help him out and usually unsuccessfully. This is why Houston cannot team defend when Bev is in the game.

      The reason McHale plays Lin with Bev is because Lin's league best defense offsets Bev's defensive and court reading deficiencies.

      Keep in mind that I am not criticizing Beverley because I think he is taking production away from Lin. I am content with Lin's minutes and would prefer Beverley to do well alongside Lin. But there are so many more DESERVING proven guys out there, players like the underrated Carlos Arroyo or Scottie Reynolds or Bo McCalebb or even Jonny Flynn (a player with MUCH MORE game than Beverley and would probably benefit from playing alongside and behind Lin).

    15. Lin is simply too quick and too savvy for Andre Iguodala to guard.

      Andre Iguodala can easily stay with the slower James Harden, especially since Harden is a dribble driving power guard who relies on his size to bull his way into the paint. Harden cannot physically overpower Iguodala like he can most defensive shooting guards.

      Lin, on the other hand, is every bit as strong as Harden and is quicker. Plus Lin has more offensive tools, especially in regards to setting up other players for scoring. This is why no single defender in the entire NBA can shut Lin down 1on1 and why it's Lin and not Harden that draws the best defenders and the double teams.

    16. When Harden's at the top of the key, he either steps back for a three or dribble drive off the FT line. If his threes aren't dropping, you can easily stop him by merely standing at the free throw line. That's what the Mavs do.

      Harden's much less predicatable from the corners. He should consider slashing diagonally instead of starting from the top of the key all the time.

    17. Totally agree, Etane.

      Better yet, Harden should do what you've been suggesting since the beginning of the season: put Harden off the ball and let him cherrypick off Lin's passes.

      You and I agree that if Harden played off the ball, he'd score EASIER with Lin feeding him. But I don't think Harden's secure in himself enough to go with that.

    18. We saw in February that Harden is just as capable of creating shots for Lin as Lin is capable of creating shots for Harden.

      Ideally, they should get back to that because the Rockets looked invincible when both guards are not ball sticky. However, I am not holding my breath on Harden.

      The team now has simply evolved to play better without him.

    19. http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/57543/b-s-report-zach-lowe-and-alan-sepinwall

      One thing thing that stood out for me in that Zach Lowe interview: not having Gallo, and with Lawson's status questionable, Denver's go-to play of Lawson-Gallo PnR is now gone. For half-court plays, what do they have now? ISOs for Iggy?

      In the Nuggets post-game interview, Lin said they were not used to the length and speed of the Nuggets, hence many Rox turnovers that led to easy buckets. I would like to think that those kinds of turnovers would be minimized in a playoff series, after adjusting to them.

      I also think of of Memphis' go-to plays at end games. I've seen them do ISOs for Conley at end-games, with mixed success. (I don't recall if those were simple ISOs, or a switch for Conley after Gasol sets a pick.) I think they are so money with the Conley-Gasol high PnR. If Conley gets a lane, or gets a switch, he can go for it; if they double him coming off the pick, then he can pass to Gasol in the high-post, and he can knock that down all day if he chooses to, or even find an open teammate on the other side.

      Houston's go-to play is just Harden ISO without any fake action to set it up. That predictability coupled with being matched up against either Memphis' Allen or Denver's Iggy, is not a good way to go.

      Perhaps we will see more Harden-Lin PnR in the playoffs (which has worked well at, eg, the end of a GSW game) to either get a favorable switch for Harden or let Lin do his thing.
      In the regular season games, Lin didn't have any problems going up against Conley, while Harden struggled with Allen.

    20. Obviously McHale does not agree with your assessment as he is playing Bev for defensive purposes. Pretty clear during the Phoenix game in the last 2 min.

  2. An OKC-Houston series seems most likely at this point. And it'd be a sight to see.

    And yes, I'm secretly hoping the Lakers make the 8th seed. It just wouldn't be the playoffs without them. After all, a Spurs-Lakers 1st round matchup would be the most anticipated #1 vs. #8 series ever.

    1. Why is it most anticipated?

    2. The Lakers have insane "star power" and talent for an 8th seed -- Kobe, Dwight, Nash, Pau. They've played poorly together obvious, but they've done better since the All-Star break and they have the talent and experience to give the Spurs some trouble. More than the Jazz, anyway, who would be total roadkill.

    3. I think after GSW lost to Utah it made it much more likely Rockets will end up 6th seed. Unless teams throw games to rest starters GSW will lose 3 straight, OKC, Lakers, SAS. Lakers are 2/3 over GSW, it is a B2B for GSW and it is in LA. If Rockets just beat SAC and Phoenix they will get 6th. Admitedly after tonight's game a Phoenix away game no longer a shoe in.

    4. Agreed, the 6th seed is still very possible. Rockets have the tie-breaker after all.

      Maybe McHale and Morey will dodge the Nuggets by resting the starters in the final game against the Lakers. It's an away game, so they could get away with it.

    5. Do teams/coaches really do that? Tank on purpose for standings and playoff match-ups? I remember the Knicks were in this position last year but Woodson said they would never tank just to avoid the Heat because he believed in their "ballclub." I can see both thoughts where there is a pride, possibly integrity, issue so that you don't lose just to get a better match-up, and then the reality/practicality of the matter to have the best chance during playoffs.

    6. Or they could just hire O'Neal to teach the starters how to goal tend.

    7. I don't know that they actually tank jockeying for position but if their position is already set whether they win the last few games or not I bet they decrease the minutes of their starters to rest them up and don't really try too hard to win. Look at the Heat, Wade and Bosh have been resting but plan to be back for the playoffs.

    8. Yeah, it's a fine line between resting and tanking.

      For example, it would be smart to rest Harden in a game the Lakers will be desperate -- and physical -- to win. He's played so many minutes this season and you might as well get Garcia and Delfino warmed up for the playoffs.

  3. Replies
    1. Rubio 0-10 tonight in a blowout loss to GS. Now THAT'S an awful shooting night.

      I'll take him over Vazquez, though. And Lilliard over Irving.

    2. You're back from your vacation?

  4. I'm curious, if Parsons/Delfino were playing, would Lin have seen the court in the final minutes? Lin was only getting subbed in for offense over Bev. Parsons is normally the second scorer and Mchale trusts Delfino in late game siituations, so I could see Mchale finishing the game with one or both of those guys for offense and Bev on D.

    Hope I'm wrong.

    1. Maybe, but don't care too much at this point.

      Great players were all made in postseason. Lin will earn McHale's trust though his play in postseason. Fact is if Lin performs, McHale will be forced to play him even he's not a true believer.

  5. Before the season started, I went out on a limb and openly predicted that the Rockets could win 50 games.

    They're not that far off that prediction.

    What I admittedly didn't anticipate was Kevin McHale being as bad a defensive coach as he was. I figured that he'd at least get the Rockets to go after people defensively, but he hasn't.

    I also thought that McHale was going to do exactly what he said he was hired to do: ram the ball down people's throats and play hard physical big man basketball. Instead, the Rockets play finesse basketball.

    Despite all the season's craziness (typical for a NBA season), Lin has held this young minimim Rockets team together. He did it by being the only true floor general the team has while also dramatically elevating the play of players like Greg Smith who would not even be in the NBA on any other team with any other point guard besides the heroically unselfish Lin.

    I think Jeremy Lin has done as good a job as could be possibly expected given his role on the team and the evolving nature of his game. The season was a SUCCESS for Jeremy Lin!

    1. Why do I still feel depressed then? I kid...

    2. Jeremy is a success. The season was a failure considering he played the so called floor general like 15% of the time.

      McHell has to really redeem himself during the playoffs. He needs to play Lin as floor general 100% of the time when he's on the floor.

      The floor general is Lin not Harden. Play Harden like a SG. Have him move without the ball and slash to the bucket. Have him waiting in the corner for a catch and pop. DO NOT have him standing at the top of the key and not move but instead wave for the ball.

      And, Lin will take care of the rest. It's as simple as that to win your Coach of the Year award. Don't blow it.

  6. Congrats again to Jeremy and the Rockets!

    I can't wait to see him in postseason.

    I don't mind any team as 1st round opponents as I anticipate the Rockets have little chance of advancing anyway.

    From a interesting viewship standpoint, I would like to see OKC, then Denver, SAS would be 3rd choice. I believe Jeremy can perform well against any of them.

  7. JLinfan#1, perhaps it's time to invite back all the Lin fans like nemo who don't come around much any more and the doubters like "Billy Chung", et al. for the playoffs. It's time to celebrate and gloat just a little.

    1. nemo? the crazy person who had videos on youtube in which he claimed JLin was a criminal? are you out of your mind?

  8. This is a great video of JLin's high school coach. Says what we all have known:


    "His game is running the show, his strength is being the leader and making the decisions for the team. I mean that's his number one strength decision making out there."

    1. And this was in 2010 when he started with GSW before his breakout with the Knicks.

    2. That's a good find.

      Lin is like the conductor. Harden is the virtuoso.

  9. Congrats to JLin and the Houston Rockets for making the playoff!

    Although Lin didn't have his best game today but how he stepped up his game in 4Q was just clutch. He's always been a great performer when it really counts! And we get to see how he'll step up his game in the playoff!!

    Today is the day to celebrate so I will lay off Harden's D :)

    Here is an epic NBA BIG preview by Zach Lee to anticipate JLin's first playoff appearance!
    NBA BIG: Houston Rockets 2013

    1. It's interesting that he's always been clutch, look at this article from high school when he won California player of the year. It's not like he's suddenly doing it in the NBA. I wonder how many games we've lost due to him not being in in the 4th quarter:

      BOYS PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Jeremy Lin / A knack for the big play


    2. Thanks! Very exciting! I won't be completely satisfied until I see Lin suited up and ready to go at the first game in the playoffs.

  10. Replies
    1. "A lot of the defensive strategies you see now are a natural evolution from rule changes," says Houston GM Daryl Morey, in reference to the league's decision a decade ago to abandon illegal defense rules and essentially allow zone defenses. "First the defense evolved by overloading the strong side, and now the offenses are evolving to beat that."

      Morey concedes the Rockets might have to add some spice to their simple high pick-and-roll system next season. "I do feel like in a playoff series, it might put us at a disadvantage," he says, "because we're a little less sophisticated." 2 (The Rockets' high pick-and-roll offense ranks as one of the league's half-dozen most efficient, and Morey says the relatively simplistic style is mostly the result of the organization's focus on acquiring James Harden in a trade finalized just before the season.)

      "The bad teams in our league are the ones who don't pass the ball well," says Kelvin Sampson, the Rockets' lead assistant. "Teams that just play on one side of the floor are going to struggle against defenses that load up on that side."

      the game has changed from when Mchale played the game. he pays a lot of lip service about passing, ball moveme, "sticky" and 9 TOs, but it only applies to everyone else and not Harden or even Parsons.

      this article is a must read for all

    2. Fun article.

      However, it neglects the REAL reason that teams can afford to pack the paint: because post players have NO GAME anymore.

      In McHale's day, players posted up on every possession. Mchale was just one of many post players that roamed the paint. The post up play was the primary option, and even bad teams consistently rammed the ball inside. Similarly, players in McHale's day were much more capable of defending the post individually than they are today.

      Today's early entry candidates enter the NBA with unformed games and poor fundamentals. These players often don't have the patience or interest in learning true big man moves. So when a 4 year player like Orlando's Andrew Nicholson comes into the game, it's like some sort of revelation when all he's actually doing is playing his position correctly!

      Coaches can't run big man plays for big men that don't know how to play, and that's the bottom line.

      The team in today's NBA that reminds me the most of an 80s post up team is the Memphis Grizzlies. Indiana with Tyler Hansbrough as the starter is also similar to an 80s post up team. Today's Pacers and Grizzlies are top teams, but back then they'd have been sub.500 teams on the playoff bubble.

      Nothing against Lin and the Rockets, but they'd be a lottery team in the 80s and even 90s. The way Memphis and Indiana bullied Lin's Rockets is what the Rockets would face EVERY GAME in a different era.

    3. This doesn't make sense. If the post players today have no game, then there is no need to pack the paint to defend the post player. Just play them straight up one on one. They're packing the paint because zone defenses are now allowed (to some extent - 3 sec rule) in the NBA whereas in the past they required man-to-man defense. So in the old days with man-to-man defense, players like Carmelo who are iso players thrive because they cannot be doubled teamed. But today, teams can bring a help defender to guard Carmelo hence iso ball where the ballhandler is an unwilling passer will fail more times than not.

  11. Wow! 'can't miss this historic moment. May I also give my heartfelt Kudos to our boy Jeremy and the Rockets for fulfilling their goal of making it to the playoffs.

    In the beginning of the season , nobody ever gave this young , inexperienced team a chance. But now , look at where they are.
    Just confirms what I've always believed about Jeremy - a man of Destiny!

    'Can't wait to see his mighty exploits in the playoffs!

    Go JLin!

  12. Missed the game but WOW, Lin and the team made the playoffs!

    CONGRATULATIONS to Lin and the ROX!

    The game was so close we almost lost it. Luckily Lin was so clutch and he scored 4 pts of which 2pts from the FT in the final 2 minutes. Kudos to Lin for tying the game for the win!

    I did my usual raw stats keeping and saw the Beard had 9T/O and from these T/O, the Suns scored 10pts? Unbelievable! The Suns scored 14pts from Rox's 16 T/Os. 10pts came from Harden. Fortunately the Suns helped us win the game. phew...

    1. Thanks for compiling the list of 10pts off Harden's 9 TOs.

      And this is beside Harden regularly losing his man for wide open 3s. One was so bad with 10 feet between Harden and his man that Drexler almost called out Harden immediately in 1 play :)

      Houston got lucky with Lin's 2 clutch plays toward the end and Harden's goaltending call because Phoenix was getting all the wide-open shots they wanted.

    2. Not surprised Harden losing his man for wide open shots. Remember we have had a thread dedicated to just debating over how many points the team lost to the opponents due to his lackadaisical defense? As much as Drexler the homer announcer and big fan of Harden is, surely he can take Harden's lack of effort on D as a reason the Rox lose to a team with long losing streak.

      I laughed when people say it's the superstar privilege for Harden not to play D just because he often scores the highest points. They have blinders not to see Harden is doing it at the expense of the team. With Lin playing PG and without Harden onboard, the Rox would still have made it thus far, IMO.

  13. JLin & GSmith looking pretty darn happy!


  14. Replies
    1. James Harden CAN'T DEAL WITH PRESSURE.

      Unlike Lin who's been pressured by coaches and racism since he was a grade schooler, James Harden is a max contract player who gets TERRIFIED in big games. He then gets all selfish in order to mask that insecurity.

      Harden needs to relax and know that he's got the ultimate NBA closer on his side in Lin. He needs to stop playing SCARED and just run the offense like everyone else on the team is. Let the game come to him instead of doing the "Kobe" and FAILING by going solo against crowds of defenders.

      As has been the case so many times this season, Lin saved the Rockets DESPITE Harden. Games like these are why I view James Harden as a max contract SCRUB!

    2. Mchale has created a ball hog diva in James Harden. He has unleashed that inner demon.
      I have been very much an optimist about Lin and Harden becoming a HOF duel, but after reading this, I'm beginning to have my doubts.

      Lin saved Harden's bacon last night, but I don't expect the refs will give that many favorable calls to him in the playoffs. "29 points, and 9 TOs ", that's only doable against scrub teams.

    3. Reminded me of someone who said, "Sometimes X person just want to score 29 points and have like 9 turnovers, I said to him, X we're trying to win the game here"

      I laugh

    4. I still think Lin and Harden can become a Hall of Fame duo.

      I do think that James Harden will settle down, especially once his max contract kicks in. Then he can just play basketball instead of trying to pad his stats at the expense of the team.

      For all of my withering criticism of Harden's game, I do believe that he's more than capable of becoming a truly great shooting guard who excels on both ends of the floor.

      I think that James Harden has it in him to become a highly efficient 25 point scorer AND a suffocating ball hawking defender like Lin. He'll have to work on his post ups and move better without the ball, and of course Harden needs to get in better shape to play that hard defense at Lin's level.

    5. @khuang they both will need much better coach especially Harden

    6. @KHuang. Harden can't deal with defensive pressure or pressure to become Houston's superstar?

    7. My definition of a "superstar" is different from what the media designates.

      To me, a basketball "superstar" is a game changing dominant player who can impact the game on either end of the court by getting his whole team going. That guy also has to be able to get it done against anybody.

      Harden has had his trouble dealing with defensive pressure, yes. Against teams that actively trap him and have big athletic players that can physically match up with him, Harden has trouble.

      And as far as game pressure goes, I see his constant insistence on breaking the offense to go iso as WEAKNESS and not strength. If Harden were so good, he could do like Lin and play team ball to get his numbers.

      To the media, James Harden is a major league flawless superstar. To me, he's a talented guy with some holes in his game that can be easily addressed.

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  15. Yesss! JLin and the Rox in the Playoffs!

    Today , my kid's been in physical pain because of a medical condition. This news of JLin making it to the playoffs put a smile in his face.

    Thanks JLin for touching our lives!

    #Day of VICTORY!

    1. Awww! That's so sweeet! If only Jeremy knew how he is making a difference in the lives of so many people around the globe...


    2. hopefully your kid will get better soon, josh.
      Perhaps you can tweet Lin's business manager so Lin can send a special tweet to your kid :)

    3. Hope everything went fine for you and your kid =)

    4. Hope your kid get better soon, josh.

      [About psalms' suggestion], here are 2 other guys close to JLin you can send your tweet to:
      LONG LAM
      JOSH FAN

    5. Yes,Jeremy takes time to care for kids. He's such an inspiration to them. His games recently excited my own kid. He just can't stop talking about Jeremy to his cousins and friends recounting every marked play in the recent mini winning streak where Jeremy was at the helm. And while doing that , I saw that glow in my kid's face and sparkle in his eyes. So , yes , @via. I think I read your recent post here saying - Jeremy is a gift to kids. So true. He is indeed! :)

      @josh , wish you and your kid the best. :)

    6. Wow! Thank you guys for all your warm wishes for my kid. JLin's fans are the best , really. ^-^

      Thank God , my kid is fine now. He's recovering fast. His attending doctor said , he'll be completely fine in a couple of days.

      @via , thanks for your post about JLin's guys. 'appreciate it. ^-^

      Thank you guys again , really...

  16. Lin was one of the main reasons for NYK make the playoffs last year and was now with Houston
    Congratulations Lin!

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  18. Hi All
    Glad to find a forum of Lin Fans!

    First saw Jeremy on TV when sportscenter reported he was named Eastern Conference player of the week last year.
    Been big fan since Linsanity.
    I dont like to post just about his game, cause I think Jeremy is more than basketball to me.
    He is an inspiration to me for his play on the court and his conduct off the court.
    I been following the Rockets team this year and will be cheering Jeremy along with you guys through the playoffs.

  19. Congrats to the Rockets and Jeremy!

    The next step is to see how well they perform in the playoffs. I've said this on ClutchFans, which many of you go to, but I think this Rockets team will go as far as Lin and Asik takes them. Harden will get his points regardless but when both Lin and Asik are playing well I believe this Rockets team can beat anybody.

  20. Lin needs to bring his Linsanity 2.0 to pull out a first round upset.

  21. Replies
    1. This Houston publication is the only one that seems to zero in on Lin and praise him. He sees it like we do.

    2. Love the article.. Hopefully mainstream media will get behind Jlin now... Thanks via for posting.

    3. That's a refreshing account of JLin's year.

    4. :) yw, Oz. Hopefully.

      - Yeah, he's been writing about the things we've been saying here, cali. [His article on JLin being shackled had JF arguing with fans on twitter.] We should support truth tellers like him. :)

  22. Howard Chen ‏@ho_chenCSN
    Delfino's back workin out. Outside of him and GSmith, the rest r either rooks or midseason acquisitions. #RedNation
    10:16 AM - 10 Apr 13

    Scratch that: JLin has just arrived to voluntary workouts. #RedNation
    10:19 AM - 10 Apr 13

    [Parsons, returning from injury like Delfino, joins them later.]

  23. Replies
    1. Every one of those "inconsistent" teams is in the top 12 in the NBA for 3PA/GM and that's not chance. Notice how "consistency" is irrelevant, as there's no pattern in the quality of the teams in each group.

  24. Replies
    1. I think that is accurate. GSW will Lose to OKC, then have a B2B against Lakers in LA who has beat them 2 of 3 games, then play SAS. They are likely to lose the next 3 out of 4 games. If the Rockets win 2 of their remaing 4 games they will be 6th with the tie breaker. They could lose to Memphis, beat SAC and Phoenix, rest their starters for playoff against LA taking a loss and still be 6th seed.

  25. Replies
    1. This quote inserted in between the other two [from David Barron's article above]...

      JF: (on the key to everything coming together so quickly for this club)

      “I think the coaching staff really needs to get a lot more credit for what they do. A lot of people talk about the players because we’re the ones playing but our coaching staff is really talented. The way they coach us, just trusting us enough to give us that freedom, and to be able to coach us in what that freedom should look like, generally speaking – I think that’s pretty hard to do.

      “(Kevin McHale) has done a great job. He’s gone through a lot of personal problems. I don’t know what it’s like to go through tragedy like that, I’m obviously not a parent myself, but what he’s done, just being energetic, great personality, players’ coach, we all really respect who he is and how he does what he does.”

    2. Yeah I'm nosy =) Here's the POST PRACTICE INTERVIEW [4/10/13]

      They asked him specifically about McHale at the end, JLin didn't voluntarily cite him.

      Just found McHale's mention in the segment a bit incongruent, given JLin's veiled dissatisfaction with him in past interviews.

    3. Lin is a smart guy. He voiced his dissatisfaction. Now that it's out there and his minutes/usage have been better, he can go back to falling in line and saying complimentary things about his coach.

      And if the benchings and hiding in the corner get really bad and awkward again, Lin will have to speak up again for himself.

    4. True, @swing, he's a smart, diplomatic guy. [ Also, I wonder if he was talking about Finch. He talks about the coaching staff, not the coach. If he'd meant McHale, he'd make a point of mentioning his name, the way he does D'Antoni.]

      But the article was put together to read as if JLin was specifically lauding McHale. Editing trick.

    5. [What's out there, and not the only one...]

      "Kevin McHale for me he's gotta be up there, 1.9 years of experience avg for that Rocket team." - Jon Barry on COTY race.

    6. I actually was touring McHale for Coach of the Year before any of these pundits were.

      Of course, I and everybody here knows that the REAL coach of the Rockets is Jeremy Lin.

      McHale does deserve credit for overseeing the operation. Plus McHale has done a fabulous job developing his big men.

      By the way, it's commonly known around the NBA that winning Coach of the Year is a DEATH SENTENCE that usually leads to a firing. So if McHale gets the award, he likely will not last!

    7. Indeed, I'm hoping McHale receives his well deserved award, COTY. Once he's the COTY, we can say bye bye to him.

  26. My Hollywood dream ending is that they make it to the NBA finals vs the Knicks. Get behind with 3 losses playing Harden iso-ball. Then finally McHale gives Jeremy the reigns winning 4 games straight and the game winning shot is a Jeremy replay of the Toronto Raptors winning 3 pointer but instead of Calderon it is over Melo.

  27. Hope Lin steps it up in the playoffs and proves his haters wrong. Was just listening to The Drive Home with Charlie & Lance on Sportstalk 790. And they named Harden, Parson, Jones, and Asik as part of the Rockets young core. And they were hoping, although noting that it was unlikely, that Lin could be moved for an upgrade at the PG position.

    1. I heard that too. It was after the Nugget's game. Charlie & Lance are idiots, earlier in the show they even admitted they didn't watch the game, must be in the 60% that can't get Rocket's games. If they had watched they would known that Jeremy was the only one still fighting, the only one even keeping them in the game and that Harden was benched. They totally just keep talking more about football and the Titan's than the Rockets even when the football season's over.

    2. Many people covering the NBA, I suspect, don't actually watch most of the games. Their 'research' is grounded in looking at box scores and extrapolating from the few games they've seen.

      It's laughable when you think about it. These people, as part of their job, won't even pay 100 some dollars to get League Pass and cable TV to watch a sport they are supposed to cover.

      Granted, it takes a ridiculous amount of time to watch so many games, and few actually do this except those who are true NBA junkies. (That's also why I respect Zach Lowe so much besides his insightful analysis: he watches a shit load of games, including teams that most people would consider unentertaining.)

      That's also why you hear the same memes over and over about Lin. Since they don't watch many games, and don't want to talk out of their ass, they go the safe route and just repeat what others have said. Also, since they watch few games, they are more likely to interpret the little data they do see according to the prism of preconceptions already circulating in the media. It takes an open and nimble mind to, on the basis of just watching a few games, question the truth of the memes.

    3. If what Lin says is true, and he's endured a lifetime of getting everyone's best shot since he was a young kid, then he will do well in the playoffs, and probably not because the Rox will put him in such a position, but when things are falling apart, Lin will just take over due to instinct when the team is at a loss.

      My only concern is that Lin will take over when it's a little too late when it's become too ridiculous that the whole team is fed up with Harden iso-ball, which everyone knows won't work except for the Rockets Front Office and Coaching Staff.

      What's best for Lin & the Rockets best shot in the first round, in my opinion, is against the OKC Thunder. Lin will likely get jobbed by the refs in any series, so who cares if its OKC, Spurs, or Denver.

      1) Harden has something to prove against OKC. He might have 1 or 2 bad games, but he will not have 4 bad ones in a row. My only fear is that in his bad games, he will ISO Harden into negative oblivion instead of letting Lin and the other teammates pick up the slack. It will take a team effort to win on the road....

      2) OKC's perimeter defense especially with Westbrook is suspect. Lin will get his against Westbrook and then some. I suspect Lin has a playoff gear we have not seen yet. Westbrook will have his hands full with Lin just as much as Lin will have his hands full on the defensive end. Hopefully Mchale doesn't double down on Beverly guarding Westbrook which would be a HUGE mistake because Bev can't make up for it on the other end like Lin can.

      If Lin can exact his will on the Thunder, Westbrook will brick and ballhog and/or get into an argument with him team/coaches. I would LOVE to see that. I believe Lin is one of the few rare players than could do that to Westbrook and not become overpowered by Westbrook's insane offensive athleticism.

      3) NBA fans, media, and other teams pay attention to OKC. This is good for Lin because others will be watching these games. Less people will watch Spurs/Houston or Denver/Houston. But OKC? People will watch OKC even if they could care less about Lin/Rox. And if Lin does his thing, people will see it being done in intense playoff games that matter.

      So OKC is who I want to see in round1 since round2 is no guarantee with this squad.

    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    5. swinglinezigzag, I agree OKC poses a challenge for Harden on the mental level, exposing a weakness: because of the history between him and the franchise (relegated to 6th man, not getting re-upped there), Harden tries so hard to make a statement through the matchup and to prove something that he loses sight that the team win is what is important. Once Harden is in that mindset, it's difficult to win against an elite opponent.

      Also, his ex-teammates know how to defend him without being drawn into his foul baiting. When Harden isn't getting to the line, his game really suffers. (Actually, Harden's foul baiting techniques were created/cultivated between himself and Kevin Durant, who does it all the time. OKC players have seen those tricks in every game, in every practice. And refs are more likely to swallow their whistles in playoff games.)

      What IS nice about the HOU-OKC matchup is that Lin is able to make WB tentative and uncomfortable. Lin has embarrassed him with steals and stripped and getting to where WB wants to be before WB makes his move. The difference is obvious whenever Lin's substitute comes on: WB suddenly goes back to his usual aggressive play. Anyway, if Lin played well in such a playoff series, with the huge media attention and stage, it would garner him lots of respect.

      As a sidenote, WB was not very successful posting Lin up in their last few matchups, but WB's post-up game against guards has been getting better and better.

    6. Yes Occu, agreed, I think Lin can shine in an OKC matchup and stick it to Westbrook. And if Lin gets rocked? Good, Lin can use that to fuel his summer training.

      Spurs are too smart and experienced for the young Rockets. I don't want to see that match up as much as I want to think the Spurs are injured and hurting and old. They are too disciplined and experienced. I just believe the Rockets will lose to them and get out-coached in 4 or 5 EXTREMELY CLOSE games, so close that the Rox should win but simply lose due to inexperience.

      Pop will just let's Lin do his thing. If Lin gets hot, Leonard switches to Lin and or traps with Green/ Parker/Ginobili. Otherwise Pop just shuts Harden down into iso ball mode and throws tons of fresh defenders at Lin from Parker to De Colo to Leonard etc.

      Denver is just coached a bit better and is deeper with more talent. I see Houston winning at least 2 games if not 3 home games, with a game 7 on the road in a loss. But heck, I can see a 4 game sweep as well. However, to me, Rox have a better chance of playing the Nuggs than Spurs.

      With OKC, they just play young man/hothead basketball, something I believe the Rox can beat. I know few teams can match OKC's athleticism, but I believe the Rockets have just enough to fight these guys to a standstill.

      Harden is NOT scared of OKC. And Lin HAS TO show up against OKC and get big stats to put WB in a mental funk/rage. WB doesn't play defense to get people back, he starts ballhogging and forcing his will on offense.

      If Lin can turn that on its head, it will be fun to watch. Lin won't get an ounce of credit for it on TV or in the media, but we will all see it. I just see Lin being able to do this by the end of a 6 or 7 game series.

    7. This is maddening. What a remarkably terrible fan base. If they want an upgrade at PG, they're going to be paying more than 8mil/year. Do they understand that any PG that comes in, besides cp3, is going to have to play off the ball, have a much lower usage rate and will not get to be the primary playmaker/ball handler (Lin's own words)?!?! You're telling me a better PG is going to be okay with that role? You're telling me Morey is going to pay more money at the PG position for that role?

      I'm beyond confused, how stupid are these people? HOU is lucky as hell to have someone as willing and team oriented as Lin. Ungrateful inbreds.

  28. A World Without Gallo: Can George Karl's Nuggets Survive?


    1. On a George Karl team, losing a single player never truly changes the game.

      It may sound crazy, but the guy that the Nuggets can't afford to lose is the star of Shaqtin' a Fool, Javale McGee!

      McGee is the only skywalking shotblocker the Nuggets have. He does as good a job as anybody in intimidating shots and challenging the midrange. If the Nuggets lost McGee to injury, their playoff hopes would be seriously damaged even with a healthy Gallo and Lawson.

      Though I love watching Javale McGee whoop it up on Shaqtin' A Fool, I still have great respect for his game. He wouldn't be earning $10 million a year if he really was "Tragic Bronson".

  29. I'm really looking forward to Lin in the playoffs.

    I think he's going to do great. Lin's extremely physical power game is tailored for playoff basketball.

    The illegal reffing Lin's endured all season has prepared him well for the physicality of the playoffs. Most players in the NBA fade when they can't get the whistles they're accustomed to getting.

    Lin's Rockets teammates, including Harden, will not be ready for the bruising physicality that awaits them. I just wish that the Rockets had a battle hardened enforcer like Chuck Hayes to retaliate when guys hit Lin illegally.

  30. Are any of you going to Houston (or the other team's city) for the playoff?

    My friend and I are planning to go to the playoff to support Lin.

    If you know any fan clubs/groups are going, could you let me know?

  31. The Lin haters are finally silenced for good.
    With Harden out, Lin led the rockets trounce the clippers.
    Then he led the team to outclass the magic without Harden & Parson.
    Lin Scored 15 pts, made 10 assists turning over the ball only twice in the game with the Kings.
    Harden scored 21 points made 9 assists while turning over the ball 5 balls.
    Then in the game with Portland, Lin clearly outplayed Damian Lillard in 8/13 shooting while dishing out 8 assists and 2 steals. He keeps the ball moving so well that his scoring seemed pale in contrast with his overall performance of team basketball.
    In the game with Denver, Lin was the only consistent player on the court. McHale benched Harden for the first time for throwing up bricks on 2/10 shootings leading to fast breaks of the NUGGGETS. Lin outscored Harden 23 to 14.
    In the game against Phoenix, Lin scored four of the last seven points to tied the game before Phoenix's goaltending to give the rockets a ticket to the playoff. Harden scored 33 points but turnovered the ball twice.
    All in all, Lin came in this season rehabilitating from a knee surgery to a new team and new style of playing carrying the team to the playoff as the PG of the team despite injuries and absence of Parson & Harden.
    He is at last the bona fide clutch team leader of the rockets playing better and better at the end of season improving in all areas of his games.

    Lin's contribution is effectively summarized by Chris Baldwin:
    Finally to all Lin fans, we rest our case against the Lin haters with facts.