Anyone who witnessed Linsanity a few years back missed something special. Jeremy Lin captured the hearts of basketball fans throughout the world as he led the losing New York Knicks to winning ways. All this was done with Carmelo Anthony on the bench with an injury. Now, today, it was reported on Hoops Hype the Knicks would love to get Lin back. It seems like an unlikely reunion as the Knicks lack trade pieces the Houston Rockets would like, but it’s a fun rumor.
So what happened to allow Lin to leave in the first place?
There are many theories to the true reason for Lin’s exodus. Some believe Anthony didn’t like him stealing his thunder as King of New York. Others believe James Dolan got upset with the way he negotiated for a new contract the following summer. Many in the know believe Mike Woodson did not believe in him. Probably a little of all of the above are true.
You can’t blame Lin — his heart and knowledge of the court and game outweighs his talent. He has his physical limitations but he knows how to win. After the season, with Mike D’Antoni gone, the first thing the Knicks organization did was look for a point guard. They tried to get Steve Nash and settled with Jason Kidd. Two great point guards past their prime. Don’t believe the organization rhetoric that the move was to mentor Lin; it was to replace him. Stereotyping just does not work in Lin’s favor. Harvard educated, God oriented, Asian American. Was he the Tim Tebow of the NBA ?
Prior to Linsanity, the Knicks under Mike D’Antoni were losing and in a free fall. Desperate for anything, with injuries prevalent (sound familiar?) Lin was put into the game and literally took over. His play inspired his teammates and changed the direction of the season. Some believe Linsanity did not fare well with Anthony. Lin is about teamwork, penetration, but most importantly, he is about winning and proved he is capable of taking and making the big shot. This is a talent the current team is lacking.
Lin was an asset. The Knicks continually give away assets. They have given away, by trade or free agency, players like Jamal Crawford, Zach Randolph, David Lee, Nate Robinson, Corey Brewer, Chris Copeland, Lin, etc. These are just a few names that got away and do not have one draft pick to show for it.
The Knicks stated it was Lin’s contract — three years, $25 million. Yet they offered approximately $24 million to Kidd and Marcus Camby, plus the money they gave and currently pay to Raymond Felton. It was never about the money. The organization didn’t like him. Heck, all he did was fill seats in the Garden, win games and fans throughout the world. LINSANITY was electric, and the Knicks should have kept him. Unfortunately, for us the fans, they didn’t want him and Lin was hurt, he felt slighted, so he took the best offer. No one could blame him for going to Houston.
Since then, he immediately helped turn Houston around. Yes, they have James Harden, I prefer Anthony. Until this year they did not have Dwight Howard. The Knicks have talent, they need a winning point guard. Is Lin the solution? On paper no, but it would make for a great sequel.
Dr. Eric Kaplan is the Bestselling author www.5minutemotivator.com
Follow him on twitter @drekaplan