There's definitely a new star in the NBA, a classic tale of the underdog who no one bothered to even consider the potential explosive talent he had to offer the game. Now, one team's coach was lucky enough to see beyond the surface and really see what the potential was for this young individual who doesn't have the typical aura of a NBA superstar.
New York Knick's coach had listed the qualities that have made the former Harvard guard a star in New York. The same qualities that would still have him sitting on the Golden State Warriors' bench plus it couldn't even get him drafted in the NBA. Jeremy Lin got cut twice and demoted to the minor leagues four times as well as former Warriors coach Keith Smart wasn't the only guy who didn't see what he had with Lin. Knicks coach Mike D'Antoni had so many questions about Lin's defense and shooting that he only gave him a chance when the team was desperate. But now Lin's control of the offense draws comparisons to Phoenix star Steve Nash.
It was like winning the lottery for D'Antoni saying that if you buy a ticket, you hope, but there's no guarantee it's going to happen. It sure didn't in Golden State or the Houston Rockets, where they liked Lin but had too many guards in front of him. And it wouldn't have happened in New York if Baron Davis had gotten over his back woes sooner, or if Iman Shumpert didn't hurt his knee in the season opener, or if any of the three point guards D'Antoni tried first had been able to run his offense properly.
What makes Lin so different is that so many teams had multiple chances to grab him. Instead, many passed on him twice in the 2010 draft. He was on the waiver wire twice in December. But teams simply hadn't seen him enough, given he played only 284 minutes in the NBA last season. They didn't even know he worked in the offseason with a shooting coach to correct a perimeter game that was a weakness. Or weren't aware that he asks assistant coaches to have tape available in the morning for extra study before practicing.
What we learn from Lin's story is a lesson to the many scouts lining up to look at all those college stars... Better not forget about the little guys.
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