I’m adding this new quote to my long list of Quotes I LOVE,
“I wish people understood just how hard we have to work, even the guys who never touch the floor, because you never know when you’re gonna get that opportunity. You have to do everything to be ready to play.” – Jeremy Lin (1988 -)
I LOVE the context (see “The Raptors’ Jeremy Lin is proud of playing a small role in a big victory” by Doug Smith – The Star Sports Reporter) of the above quote as I would expand it to more than “ready to play” and include “ready to say“!
“It was telling that Danny Green, in trying to explain who kept him sane after what might have been a series-changing turnover at the end of Game 6 in Oakland, pointed to Lin as a teammate who kept him in the moment.
“JLin was great with keeping me positive, ‘We are going to get this stop. Don’t worry about it,’ ” Green said.“
Full article references:
1) 2019-06-19 “The Raptors’ Jeremy Lin is proud of playing a small role in a big victory” by Doug Smith – The Star Sports Reporter
//Jeremy Lin said he wrestled emotionally with being a bit player on a championship team and what it meant to him to earn a ring with the Toronto Raptors when he didn’t have much to do with what transpired on the court.
And when the Harvard graduate, a fiercely proud Asian who is now the first Asian to earn an NBA ring, broke it all down, he was rightfully proud.
As he should have been.
“I had to struggle with, ‘Do I really deserve this? The more I thought … I do. I should enjoy it and embrace it. I’m not gonna shy away from celebrating that or have anyone taking it away from me,” Lin said on the Off The Pill podcast quoted by the South China Morning Post. “Hopefully those same Asians making fun of me, five or 10 years down the road when I’m no longer playing, they can appreciate, ‘Oh, that’s the first Asian-American to win an NBA championship.”
It was telling that Danny Green, in trying to explain who kept him sane after what might have been a series-changing turnover at the end of Game 6 in Oakland, pointed to Lin as a teammate who kept him in the moment.
“JLin was great with keeping me positive, ‘We are going to get this stop. Don’t worry about it,’ ” Green said.
And that’s what teammates are, even more than guys who make passes or take shots or score the points and get the public glory. It’s what guys like Lin do. It may have taken him a while to dissect it all but he came to the realization of how he fit in a much bigger picture. He may have only played 51 seconds over the six games but he was on the team. And that counts.
“There were times in all honesty where I felt I had to tell myself I deserve a championship,” Lin said on the podcast. “As a competitor who plays and has played my whole life, I’m not used to not playing, so I was like, ‘This is tough, do I really deserve it?’
“Then I started to think about my whole journey and I definitely do. I contributed to the team, I played 23 games in the regular season. I play against these guys all the time, whether it’s in workouts or whatever, even watching the game and talking to guys, giving my opinion, being a voice.
“That’s very, very valuable. In terms of staying ready and working out, I worked really, really hard this year.
“I wish people understood just how hard we have to work, even the guys who never touch the floor, because you never know when you’re gonna get that opportunity. You have to do everything to be ready to play.”
Doug Smith is a sports reporter based in Toronto. Follow him on Twitter: @smithraps//
//This is going to be unpopular but what the heck.
With all due respect to Jeremy Lin, the idea that “the NBA has given up on me” that he emotionally put forward at some point – I saw it yesterday on the tweeter machine and then in this piece – is a tad disingenuous.
Not to mention dead wrong.
I understand totally that free agency for fringe NBA players can be difficult. I would hate to be in the position where I’m offering my services around and no one seems to be answering calls because rejection – if that’s what it is – is hard to accept.
And I wish that everyone who is good enough to play in the NBA could make untold money and play until they didn’t want to play anymore but that’s not the way life, or professional sports, works.
Maybe that sucks but it’s absolute reality, as hard as that is for some to comprehend.
But this “I feel like, in some ways, the NBA has given up on me” stuff?
In this case? Nonsense.
Lin has played for nine seasons in the NBA, 480 games at the moment, and for eight different franchises. He’s started 221 games, been handsomely rewarded with long-term contracts and had to scuffle through shorter deals but, believe me, he’s been given every opportunity to prove himself as an NBA player.
He’s done that.
Did it in New York when he had that great run of Linsanity with the Knicks, did it in Houston when he started every single game of an 82-game season and was a starter the next season, too. The Knicks time was magical, might have been the high water moment for that wretched franchise from then until now. The game in Toronto – when he made the buzzer-beating three to win – would probably be on the Top 10 list of all-time memorable Raptors regular season home games.
He’s been in Charlotte, Brooklyn, Atlanta and then Toronto since, each team more than willing to give him a shot.
Yeah, he got hurt when he was with the Nets and that was a terrible break, but it’s a fact that every single NBA player lives with and it’s a career risk, they all know it.
Look, I harbour no ill will to Jeremy Lin. I understand he was and is a touchstone for Asian players worldwide, he is a constant reminder of what’s possible and he unquestionably takes his responsibility as a role model seriously and for that he deserves tremendous respect.
And he’s gotten it and has been an inspiration and that’s going to be his legacy, which isn’t too bad.
I understand it might have been difficult for him to rationalize being on a championship team but not feeling really a part of it because he didn’t play, although that has to be tempered by the fact his teammates and bosses did not at all think that [K Note: link switched to MSN].
But the NBA hasn’t “given up” on a 30-year-old who has played in as many games and for as many teams in as many roles as he has.
I hope he finds an NBA job for next season, I really do, and this being July 29 and all, I don’t imagine that’s totally out of the realm of possibility.
If not, the guy’s had an incredible run, far more than many, and he’s taken advantage of it. I think his time in Toronto was disappointing to him, the team and the fans. I was all for his acquisition, I thought a proven pick-and-roll point guard who could shoot a bit was a solid acquisition after the departure of Delon Wright; he should have been a good pick up. He wasn’t. He got his chance, it didn’t work out and sometimes that happens.
If this is the end of the NBA career, and it might not be, it’s been a pretty good NBA career. He worked hard to make it, made it and sometimes, things end. And they seldom end the way we want them to.//