Lin puts on passing parade for Rockets
by Adi Joseph, USA TODAY Sports
Even Jeremy Lin struggles. He just dusts himself off and racks up 12 assists the next game.
Lin added seven points, five rebounds and four steals to those 12 dimes in the Houston Rockets’ 109-102 preseason win Wednesday against the Memphis Grizzlies. In doing so, he responded after a 1-for-10 shooting performance Sunday and had his first great game of the preseason.
Last season’s NBA sensation went down for the year with a knee injury before he experienced a real slump for the New York Knicks. But he’s not infallible.
That showed in his first three games of the preseason. The Rockets won two (Lin also had a scheduled game off, which Houston lost), but Lin averaged 5.3 points and 4.7 assists a game while shooting 21.1% from the field. He’s better than that.
So he rebuffed critics from his dismal display in a loss Sunday to the San Antonio Spurs. Against the Grizzlies, who used regular starting point guard Mike Conley Jr. for 22 minutes, Lin asserted himself and played the type of offense we’ve come to expect.
And, of course, he was humble about it.
“We were hitting shots today, not me personally, but everybody else,” Lin said (via Houston Chronicle). “They kind of had to stay out a little more and think twice about dropping all the way down. That opened things up to get in the middle. Once you get in the middle, it’s all about making quick decisions. You’ll probably get something good if you get to the heart of their defense.
“Me and coach talked about making the easy, simple play with a high possibility to succeed. That’s what we try to focus on as a team, just swing, swing, find the open guy and let the ball find the person that’s supposed to take that shot.”
Rockets forward Chandler Parsons effused praise, though, while better explaining what was different in this game.
“I just told him to slow down,” Parsons said (via Houston Chronicle). “I said, ‘You’re a great player; just don’t worry about the outside. Just play basketball; you’ve been doing it your whole life.’ In the second half … [For more on Jeremy Lin puts on preseason passing parade for Rockets, click here.]