Each week, we’ll ask our stable of scribes to weigh in on the three most important NBA topics of the day — and then give you a chance to step on the scale, too, in the comments below.
Jeremy Lin … what are you seeing? What do you like? Predict his future.
Steve Aschburner: His future? Jeremy Lin is going to unite with Tim Tebow to feed the hungry, heal the sick, solve the globe’s economic woes one jersey sale at a time and persuade Ahmadinejad to swap his nuclear program for one of those big foam No. 1 hands. Meanwhile, because the NBA is a copycat league, the gyms of the Ivy League soon will be crawling with scouts, eager to beat Credit Suisse and Goldman Sachs to the four-year talent … Seriously? What I like best about Lin is that no one saw this coming. No one knows when it will end. Rival coaches and players will try to crush Lin and maybe someday soon they will. But, heh heh, maybe they won’t …
Fran Blinebury: A starter in the 2013 All-Star Game. Hey, Lin would have started this year if he’d have been on the ballot and “Linsanity” had taken place maybe two weeks earlier while voting was still open. That’s because all of those itchy-fingered, left-out Yao Ming voters in China would have flooded the online balloting. I see a good story, a fun story, a kid who finally got his chance and is making the most of it. But before we start clearing out space in the Hall of Fame, let’s wait to see what happens in a few more weeks and months when teams and scouting reports catch up. He’s probably a better perimeter shooter (38.5 percent) than he showed at Golden State, though he doesn’t have 3-point range [Tuesday night notwithstanding]. I love the crossover moves and ability to get to the hoop and also his court vision and knowledge of how to play the game. In the era of the point guard, he’s a keeper.
Scott Howard-Cooper: I am seeing the perfect convergence of a team desperate for a point guard at a time when Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire have been injured. All credit to Lin, a hard worker who was ready when the chance came. But this is about circumstances as much as the player. I predict a future with dollar signs. The player cut by two teams this season and unable to get off the bench for a third until recently just clinched a guaranteed contract as a restricted free agent in the summer, and not just for one season. And then there are the marketing opportunities.
Shaun Powell: He’s certainly not worth the massive hype (not after sixgames), and definitely not a D-leaguer or bench player. He’s a good player, and a potentially very good player, who slipped through the cracks. He’s the beneficiary of the perfect storm: Harvard-educated, Asian-American heritage, underdog, humble guy with swag whose talent came together for a teetering team in the league’s biggest market. Also, this is happening after the Super Bowl and before March Madness, a window the NBA has monopolized. Lin, the Knicks and the league couldn’t have crafted it any better.
John Schuhmann: I see control and patience in running the pick-and-roll, which the Knicks were desperately missing. Most of all, I see an unbelievable amount of confidence from a guy who would be out of a job if Mike D’Antoni didn’t give him a shot against the worst defensive team of the last 20 years (that’s the Nets) 11 days ago. I love that he has no fear of failure or fear of getting sent to the floor by opposing big men, and that his confidence doesn’t lead to selfishness. Predicting his future is impossible, because there is no precedent for what he’s doing. Obviously, he’s going to come back to earth a bit, but I’ll guess that he’ll be the Knicks’ starting point guard for the next few years, especially because they have little financial flexibility going forward.
Sekou Smith: What I’m seeing is a guy who plays the game with a joy reserved for a select few, a player who has persevered in spite of all of the superficial obstacles that would sack the average man, a player so smart and so skilled that he’s been able to pick up Mike D’Antoni’s system in a matter of weeks and flourish as the Knicks’ floor leader. I like everything about Lin. He’s tough, smart, fearless (as that big shot to beat the Raptors Tuesday night showed) and completely comfortable in the spotlight that has engulfed him the past 11 days. I also like the fact that he doesn’t seem to be trying to play above and beyond his capabilities. It looks completely organic, what he’s done in this mercurial six-game stretch. As for his future, I’m not sure I want to look past the next game. I’d rather enjoy the moment, the way his teammates, coaches, Knicks fans — and sports fans in general — are these days.