Check out the swagger on Jeremy Lin. With the game tied 87-87 the Knicks missed a shot but got the offensive board and reset for a final shot. What does Lin do? Back the ball out to halfcourt, call for the rest of the Knicks to flatten out along the baseline so he can isolate against Jose Calderon, then drains the game winning pull-up three.
Toronto owned this game for the first three quarters. They outworked and out classed the Knicks, particularly in the backcourt where Calderon put up 12 points in the first quarter on his way to 25 for the game. Toronto was very physical with Lin and forced him into tough shots. Amare Stoudemire was back and finished with 21 (on 22 shots) but you know there is rust when Aaron Gray is blocking his shots. New York struggled to reintegrate him into the offense. The Raptors led by as many as 17.
Then came the fourth quarter. The Knicks upped their defensive pressure and the Raptors turned the ball over nine times in 12 minutes, shot 33 percent and scored just 12 points. Lin scored 12 points in the quarter.
And when the game was on the line, he was magic.
Linsanity knows no bounds, no boarders. Canada has been indoctrinated.
“It’s just a personal goal of mine,” James said Thursday before Cavs shootaround in preparation of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Boston Celtics. “It has nothing to do with passing the rings, passing the points, passing MVPs. It’s just my personal goal to keep me motivated — that’s all.”
“You guys are going to have the conversations about who is greatest of all time and things of that nature,” James said. “It doesn’t matter to me. At the end of the day, it’s so funny that the conversation is always talked about in the NBA about who is the greatest but it’s never talked about in the NFL about who is the greatest quarterback. It’s just like: [Dan] Marino, [John] Elway, [Peyton] Manning and [Tom] Brady. All great quarterbacks, you know — and it should be the same for us.
Jordan or LeBron? Save your hot takes. LeBron just burnt them all.
The greatest quarterback of all time is never debated? Claiming that is now the hottest take in the entire realm of the Jordan-LeBron debate.
Celtics president Danny Ainge, whose team holds the No. 1 pick, on 98.5 the Sports Hub:
We just tried to get him in for a workout, and they politely said no.
It’s not ideal.
Listen, we’ve drafted guys that wouldn’t come in for workouts before. I mean, it’s not the end of the world. We’ve watched them play a ton. We have a lot of information on them.
Good for Ball. Professional sports teams already hold inordinate power over players entering the workforce. In no other industry are top young employees assigned to a particular company, the worst-performing companies typically getting priority, with no ability to bargain with competitors.
Ball wants to play for the Lakers, who offer proximity to his family and hold the No. 2 pick. He can’t force Boston to pass on him or Los Angeles to pick him. But he can influence decision-making.
It seemed likely the Celtics would draft Markelle Fultz, and though they could still pick Ball, him declining a workout with Boston makes that only less likely. The Lakers will probably draft Ball, but this plan carries risk. If they pass, he could fall once he gets to teams less familiar with him.
Still, Ball deserves to decide for himself how to manage his career – especially in such a closed job market. Not working out for the Celtics is probably his best path to getting where he wans to go.