Jeremy Lin gets rousing applause in New York
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
NEW YORK – Just plain ol’ Jeremy Lin, starting point guard for the Houston Rockets, returned to Madison Square Garden, on Monday.
Just Jeremy Lin. No Linsanity – or any other pun, forced or otherwise – appeared at the Garden.
But he’s still a fan favorite. When Knicks PA announcer Michael Walczewski introduced the teams, Rockets player received boos, except for Lin, who heard cheers, and even received a standing ovation from many Knicks fans.
Earlier in the day, Knicks super fan Spike Lee Tweeted, “Tonight at Da Garden I Will Not Boo Jeremy Lin At His Introduction But After TIP-OFF.”
Two hours before the game started, Lin re-iterated he didn’t know what to expect from the crowd, which went wild during his memorable and unbelievable seven weeks in February and March last season.
“I don’t want to think about it too much,” he said. “Just kind of let it happened. I’m going to be thankful no matter what, regardless of whatever the reception is.”
Lin knows just about as well as any current or former Knick how special a reception can be in the Garden. He was the toast of the town last season and the arena was electric with Lin putting on show after show.
“It was obviously a time in my life just being able to play basketball and for us to win games and to do it in the fashion we did was so much fun and energy and buzz,” he said. “It’s definitely something I’ll remember forever.
“It will always have a special place no matter how long I play just because that was the beginning for me. Anytime you have a stretch like that, you’ll remember it forever. It’ll always have a special place in my heart for sure.”
It doesn’t mean New York interest was absent. Nearly 50 reporters packed the interview room pregame to ask Lin questions.
“Everything happens for a reason, and it happened the way it was supposed to,” Lin said. “Going into the summer, I thought I’d be coming back to New York. There’s no hard feelings either way. Right now, I’m in a different place in my … [For more on Jeremy Lin gets rousing applause in New York, click here.]