If you don’t know who Jeremy Lin is yet, you need to take a trip outside the cave you’ve been living in and enjoy the phenomena that the New York Knicks have sitting directly under their noses.
Buried deep on the bench a little more than a week ago (so deep, in fact, that he was often mistaken for a trainer when arriving at games), Lin was recently called up to start in the absence of marquee players Carmelo Anthony (groin injury) and Amare Stoudemire (bereavement leave).
In his first three games as a starter, Lin has propelled the Knicks to three straight victories with point totals of 25, 28 and 23 against the Nets, Jazz and Wizards.
And even though the humble 23-year-old faced a much bigger opponent in Kobe Bryant and the LA Lakers on Friday, “Linsanity” once again prevailed as the Harvard grad scored a career high 38 points and led the Knicks to their fourth straight win, tying their longest streak of the season.
“I didn’t try to see this game as any different,” Lin said following his amazing performance, which also included 7 assists and two steals. “I just try to make sure that when I get there on the floor, I play as hard as I can and try to do everything I can to help the team win.
“The only thing we established tonight is four in a row. Now we try to go for five tomorrow. I’m not too worried about proving anything to anybody. As a team we’re growing and trying to build on the momentum.”
Not everyone, however, was as nonchalant about Lin’s recent play.
“What he’s doing is amazing,” Knicks coach Mike D’Antoni said. “He answered a lot of questions tonight. Can he make an outside shot? Can he pull the trigger in a big moment? He hit two 3s that just broke the game open. There’s so much stuff that he’s doing.”
Kobe, who a day earlier said he knew nothing of Lin’s game, also had nothing but praise for Lin following the Knicks-Lakers matchup.
“I think it’s a great story,” Bryant said. “I think it’s a testament to perseverance and hard work. Good example for kids everywhere.”
Watch Jeremy Lin‘s highlights from his 38-point performance against the Lakers below and decide for yourself if he lives up to the hype: