HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — TNT analysts Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal have a chance tonight to do what 30 other NBA executives couldn’t, and that’s draft Jeremy Lin.
What more does the Knicks’ sensational point guard have to do to crash the BBVA Rising Stars Challenge draft party tonight? (7 p.m. ET on NBA TV.) All he’s done is spark the Knicks to seven straight wins and author the greatest underdog story in sports most anyone has ever seen.
So what if he wasn’t on the initial list of players considered for the game that will be played Friday night of All-Star Weekend in Orlando, pitting a mix of first and second year players selected by general managers Barkley and O’Neal.
With their TNT colleague Kenny Smith serving as the commissioner of the draft, all it would take is an executive order from him to grant Lin, and perhaps another deserving player who didn’t make the initial cut of 18 draft-eligible players, entrance into the draft pool. That would give us an even 20 and guarantee that Linsanity spreads its wings all the way through All-Star Weekend (the rumblings are he’ll be there anyway, might as well make it official).
The best part? The real heavy lifting has already been done for Charles and Shaq. The Hang Time vs. All-Ball Rising Stars Challenge draft took place last week, with the home team taking care of business as usual. All the big boys have to do is follow our lead and the team will make complete sense to them and anyone else observing.
And we’ll make this easy for you, with an assist from my main man Micah Hart of the All-Ball Blog, the Top Plays Ladder and the Hang Time Podcast (notice Micah did his best to jumpstart the Lin write-in campaign).
Sekou’s Squad (in order of draft selection):
F Blake Griffin
G Ricky Rubio
G Kyrie Irving
G/F Paul George
F Derrick Williams
G/F Evan Turner
F Tristan Thompson
F/C Tiago Splitter
F Markieff Morris
G John Wall
C DeMarcus Cousins
C Greg Monroe
G Kemba Walker
G/F MarShon Brooks
F Gordon Hayward
G/F Kawhi Leonard
G Jeremy Lin G Landry Fields
G Brandon Knight
Is there anyone out there that objects to Lin finding his way into the draft pool at this point?
And is there any basketball lover in his right mind that thinks All-Star Weekend retains its luster without Lin being in Orlando? This is the easiest and most reasonable way to make sure that Lin is going to be on someone’s couch in Orlando — preferably the one in his suite at the players’ hotel — for the league’s showcase event.