Tag Archives: New York Knicks

Lin-phomania, the basketball fantasy continues; Jimmer, the busted phenom, got next

It’s the next step of Lin-sanity. After you play “out of your mind,” next comes the crazy love that ensues from fans and general observers.
The  last second, game-winner  last night against Toronto extended the fairy tale. The game tonight against Sacramento should extend it further.

What makes it more ironic is that on the Sacramento King bench is a certain rookie named James Taft Fredette.

You remember Jimmer, the one time  basketball phenom.

He burst into our consciousness while heaving up balls from beyond downtown. He was in Utah, at BYU. And because of a hot run in the NCAAs he became a Sports Illustrated cover boy.

When lowly, small market Sacramento drafted him No. 1, Jimmer was cursed and blessed.

Management loved Jimmer and he was their poster boy. But then a coach was fired, a new one came in, and Jimmer looked out of place. He was no longer starting.

The old coach liked his shooting, but the new coach didn’t.  Jimmer is inexperienced, slow on D, doesn’t fit in with all the pieces the Kings have.

Next stop for Jimmer? The bench. You’ll see him in sweats more than you will see him sweat tonight.  Jimmer is one busted Phenom.

You just don’t hear much about it because he’s in Sacramento not New York. That’s the blessing. Sacramento is a good place to be bad.

Conversely, as Lin is finding out, New York is a great place to play out-of-your-mind-crazy.

I wonder what Jimmer will be thinking tonight as he watches Lin?

Maybe he’ll be hopeful. Jimmer shows signs that made him a media flash during the NCAAs.  But maybe if he learns that if he works hard, keeps his chin up, and doesn’t get depressed, he may one day find the spot to open up where he again can be “the man.”

Until then, there’s only one man in the NBA EVERYONE is watching.

And it’s the Asian American wonder, Jeremy Lin.

I’m no “Lin-fidel,” just a realist on Jeremy Lin. Still, he’s just what we need as more people keep blurring the difference between Asian and Asian American

I’ve got good reason to love Jeremy Lin. I’m an Asian American who went to Harvard. I didn’t play basketball, but I did play white guys in black theatre productions. (You take your extra-curriculars where you can). So my love for Lin is real. I’m just realistic. I root for the Golden State Warriors and we had a mild case of Lin-phomania last year. 

Lin-sanity is a New York phenomenon.   I’m not sure it can be sustained.

I wish Jeremy nothing but the best. No Schadenfreude from me.  He’s a Norcal homey. He worked hard and when he had his chance this time around he delivered. But I’m not sure if last week was one of those special weeks you remember forever because you just don’t replicate it that easily.  I ran for 187 yards on 7 carries as a Pop Warner half-back. I still talk about that. OK, yeah, Jeremy’s doing it in the NBA. Big diff.   I hope he has a long run and can play at the level he’s shown, but I remember last year in Oakland when he couldn’t get off the bench. 

Still, we can thank Jeremy for reinforcing the point to all of America–there’s a difference between Asian and Asian Americans.

It’s more than a technicality. It’s a point worth stating over and over.

We forgot the distinction in WWII and opened up internment camps—for Americans.

As China shows its economic might, some in this country are trying to blur distinctions again.

Maybe Jeremy Lin will help remind people during this critical time in world history, there are Asians, and then there are Asian Americans.

For more,check out my post on the Asian American Legal Defense Fund blog: