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Linsanity movie delves into racism, hype
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On October 4, 2013 @ 1:00 am In Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Sam Amick, USA TODAY Sports
HOUSTON — Anyone who remembers the two weeks of “Linsanity” in 2012 might think back fondly to the buzz generated by the first American-born player of Taiwanese or Chinese descent to play in the NBA.
But there were moments that weren’t so comfortable for Jeremy Lin, the Houston Rockets point guard who rose to fame with the New York Knicks in a way we’d never before seen. His play, his background and his story sparked a meaningful discussion that continues still, one about racial bias in a basketball world of which Lin is now such a significant part.
The news media and fans alike were forced to acknowledge stereotypes — the jokes about his court vision, quick asides about his counter-intuitive driving ability and the “chink in the armor” uses on ESPN that led to the firing of an editor and an anchor.
It’s all chronicled in Linsanity, a documentary that opens in theaters nationwide Friday and takes the race issue that Lin has dealt with since his high school days in Palo Alto, Calif., head on.
Lest anyone think the film is nothing more than a cash-grab conjured up after “Linsanity” died down, it should be noted that the footage and interviews began long before the Madison Square Garden madness began. There was the San Francisco Bay Area childhood where his immigrant parents always supported his basketball interests, his high school years, the Harvard chapter and the NBA roller coaster in which he went undrafted, made two trips to the NBA Development League and was cut twice (by the Golden State Warriors and Rockets) before captivating the masses with the Knicks.
Lin, who is so often reserved or rehearsed with the media, is as candid as can be throughout.
There is a scene of Lin, while talking with a group of kids at a basketball camp after “Linsanity” had died down, saying he wanted to quit the game while he was with the Warriors. Amid rumblings that their decision to sign the undrafted point guard had more to do with marketing than it did his talent, Lin was discouraged. He played 33 minutes the entire … [For more on Jeremy Lin movie 'Linsanity' delves into racism, hype, click here.]
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