I missed the Cavs game, so can’t go into any detail about the game, but just wanted to chime in on a historic night. Here’s the Box Score for the game.
Here’s Lin’s stat line for the night:
- 29:11 Minutes
- 6-12 Field Goal (1-4 from three-point)
- 2-2 Free Throw
- +19 (highest +/- of any players for the game)
- 11 Rebounds (1 offensive and 10 defensive)
- 10 Assists
- 2 Steals
- 3 Turnovers
- 1 Block Shot
- 15 Points
And he did all this coming off the bench, y’all! I believe the official way of saying this is “Lin fucked around and got a triple double.” Lin became the first Houston Rockets player to have a triple-double off the bench since Cedric Maxwell did it on March 31, 1988, against Indiana.
Here’s what Harden had to say about Lin getting a triple double off the bench when asked by reporters: ”That’s hard to do. Hard to do. I came off the bench and I’ve never done it. It’s just hard to be able to score the basketball, grab rebounds and pass the ball and get your teammates involved off the bench as a point guard. It’s tough. But he’s talented enough to do it and he did it.”
But Lin’s historic feat becomes even more impressive when we dig a little deeper. He did it in 29:11 minutes coming off the bench. Thanks to MrPingPong, a dedicated reader of this blog, here is a list of all the players who managed to get a triple-double playing only 29 minutes or less from this site: http://www.basketball-reference.com/. MrPingPong posted a direct link to the data in the comments section of a previous post.
As you can see we’re talking Hall of Famers and the elites of today, here! Only 16 players have managed to get a Triple-Double with 29 minutes or less of playing time since 1985 and they include such elite names as Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, Jason Kidd, Shaquille O’Neal, Kevin Durant, Russel Westbrook, Stephen Curry, etc. So Lin becomes the 17th player to achieve such a feat.
But when we go one step further, Lin’s achievement is nearly unsurpassed. Lin becomes only the THIRD player since 1985 to get a triple double playing 29 minutes or less coming off the bench. Again, thanks to MrPingPong, we have this data.
Lin keeps making history and it’s so baffling to me how anyone could continue to think he’s an average or slightly above average player. Remember how he destroyed Hall-of-Famers’ numbers during Linsanity?! Remember Nate Silver’s (THE stat head) initial analysis of what Jeremy did during only after the first few games of Linsanity? Note, Nate wrote this article after only Lin’s 4th game. Recall that Lin continued his superstar streak for many more games after that. Nate ended that article by saying that only five players had such a streak that lasted for six games or longer. Four of them are Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, Isiah Thomas and Dwyane Wade. The other was less illustrious: Lafayette “Fat” Lever. And recall that Lin made history earlier just this season with 9 threes in a game against the Sixers, even though Lin isn’t known to be a three-point shooter? So Lin makes records that he has no business of making. And, yet, his coach thinks he’s just a fluke. Anyway, I digress.
So there you have it, a historic night for Lin and all Lin fans. And what incredible timing, as he made history just as the Lunar New Year has begun. Happy Year of the Horse to everyone! (Note: does anyone else but me think it’s interesting that the Broncos are in the Super Bowl in the Year of the Horse? I think this means they’re a lock to win it all. So enjoy the Super Bowl all you Broncos fans!)
I have more to say on Lin’s historic night and may post a video on my YouTube channel about it later when I have some time and/or add more to this post.