Knicks Vs. Heat
February 24, 2012 by staff
Knicks Vs. Heat, How long could it go on? The story of Jeremy Lin had everything going for it but perspective. He had grown so popular so quickly because he didn’t look like an NBA star, whether he was brushing up against strangers on the sidewalk one month ago or working out for skeptical coaches and scouts for months before that.
Then he visited here, the city of the anti-Lins, where popular stars instantly become villains. LeBron James was in many ways the opposite to Jeremy Lin. James had perspective, which he had earned the hard way, and on Thursday he and his teammates meant to show their guest how much he had yet to learn. The Heat won their eighth straight game, 102-88, while holding Lin to eight turnovers and eight points on a dreadful 1-for-11 performance from the field.
“I can’t remember another game where it was hard to just take dribbles,” said Lin, with a hint of smile. Maybe part of him couldn’t believe he had come this far, that he had become the kind of player that the championship favorites game-plan to stop. But that is what he became, and now for the next extended phase of his nascent career he is going to have to deal with the worst kind of enthusiastic opposition. “We wanted to treat him with the respect that he deserves,” said Miami coach Erik Spoelstra. “We wanted to treat him like the other impactful point guards of this league.”
Will this go down as the bursting of the legend? It should not. Instead it should be seen as the most natural part of Lin’s dramatic progression. “It’s hard to be Peter Pan every day,” said Knicks coach Mike D’Antoni. “No way in heck you come from training camp and become one of the best players in the league. That just doesn’t happen.”
Everything Lin had accomplished has merit. In his first 10 starts he averaged 23.8 points and 9.4 assists amid a favorable schedule drawn from road games against bad teams and home games against inconsistent opponents. This does not diminish anything he did. What he did was unbelievable. He made big shots and his play was authentic and fearless. But he had not played against a devout contender like Miami.
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