Jeremy Lin reminisces about ‘Linsanity’ run in New York
Eight years ago, one of basketball’s unlikeliest phenomena took the NBA by storm.
Fast forward to now, Jeremy Lin could still vividly tell the story of how it all began as if it had just happened yesterday. After all, he was front and center of the global craze that was “Linsanity.”
Lin, the first American of Taiwanese descent to play in the NBA, relived the brief but spectacular stretch of the peak of his basketball career while playing for the New York Knicks, arguably the most polarizing franchise in the NBA.
It started on February 4, 2012 against the New Jersey Nets where he came off the bench—and out of nowhere—dropped 25 points, five rebounds and seven assists in a 99-92 win.
Making Lin’s performance more impressive was the uncertainty surrounding his future with the Knicks, fully aware that he could likely get cut from the team any time soon.
“It was our only back-to-back-to-back of the NBA lockout season and the Nets were last. The prior night we lost to the the KG, Truth, Shuttlesworth Celtics. For the past weeks I was crashing on my bros couch in Stuytown while waiting to see if Id make it past the cut deadline – a week away,” Lin, who just recently pledged $1 million to coronavirus relief efforts, recalled on Instagram.
“Dantoni subbed me in and the rest of the game was a legit blur, could barely tell you what happened haha. I just know that night was special. After the game and a career-high 25 points (my prior high was 12 lol), I was takin a shower and wondering if it was the water or tears of joy running down my face knowing they couldnt cut me now,” Lin wrote, referring to his former head coach Mike D’Antoni, whose system allowed Lin to flourish.
The rest, of course, was history with Lin leading the Knicks to a seven-game winning streak including a thrilling 92-85 win over the Lakers where he hit the game-winning 3-pointer to cap off a 38-point night.
Lin’s brilliance ended after suffering a small meniscus tear in his left knee following a March 24 game against the Detroit Pistons.
Lin played 26 games for the Knicks before the injury and helped the team go 16-10.
During that incredible span, Lin set the NBA record by becoming the first player to have at least 20 points and seven assists in each of his first five starts. He also averaged 18.5 points and 7.6 assists per game.
The 6-foot-3 point guard became a restricted free agent and eventually signed with the Houston Rockets.
Lin last saw action in the NBA last year while playing limited minutes for the Toronto Raptors, who won the title that season, before becoming a free agent and signing with the Beijing Ducks in China last August.
Lin may not be as prominent as he once was but he hopes his story will continue to lift the spirits of many especially during the pandemic.
“To bring inspiration during this tough time, I’ll be posting #MemoryLane photos and telling stories. When I need inspiration, I often look back to keep pushing fwd,” he said.
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