Jeremy Lin’s Favorite Rockets Play – Backside Pick-and-Roll

I saw this on Clutchfans regarding an interview Lin did with “Coach Nick” of BBallbreakdown, in which Lin revealed that his favorite offensive set is the backside pick-and-roll. Here’s a clip of some examples of this offensive set:

From Clutchfans: “As Jeremy explained, the initial high pick-and-pop is just false motion to get the defense moving and disguise the Rockets’ true intent. In reality, what they’re looking to execute is a backside pick-and-roll/dribble hand-off.”

The Thunder and Spurs use this set. I suspect that Harden is the one who brought this play to McHale’s attention. And it is a play that is often used for Harden. I don’t have any data on this, but I would guess that 80% of the time, they run this play for a PnR on the right side, which favors a left-handed ball handler (i.e., Harden). I don’t see them do this on the left side much, which would favor Lin. Also, I would guess that 70% of the time, this play is run for Harden. So it’s interesting, yet not surprising, that this is Lin’s favorite play.

Unfortunately for Lin, he doesn’t get to play the role of ball handler in this play much. He’s usually just the glorified ball boy who drops off the ball to the high pick-and-pop guy. So basically, McHale uses this play so Lin can bring the ball up the court and have Harden end up being the ball-handler. If only McHale would call this play for when Lin is hiding in the left corner, Lin would incredibly effective. I can see why this is Lin’s favorite play even though this play is meant for Harden. I’m sure Lin would love it even more if he gets to be the ball handler in this play. This is exactly the type of play Lin would excel in, not that McHale cares.


About JLintel

NOTE: On June 11, 2016 I switched the comments section to Disqus's platform. As a result, all comments from previous platform have disappeared from all articles.
  • MrPingPong

    Lin hasn’t been playing well lately. Dunno why. He doesn’t seem to enjoy playing. That’s just my impression.

  • dr.b

    Its on lin…u earn more then the whole coaching staff….dont defer to anyone….7 minutes in first half last night.….his fault. Play

    • MrPingPong

      Yeah, play JLin, play!
      It’s not fun to be relegated to garbage time, but yeah, just play!
      And as dr. b says, you’re making a lot of money! So don’t let money get in the way of having fun, ok, JL7! πŸ™‚

      LAC tonight! Letzz Go, JL7!

  • Forthelin

    I watched Lin play yesterday for the first time in a few games, and I noticed he seemed to be lagging at defense–not close to the kind of defense he was playing in other games. I think he’s back to not enjoying playing again. It must be tough to play well, then get relegated to the bench–when there’s no reward for playing well, you just stop.

    • MrPingPong

      I agree with everything you just said, Forthelin. Lin is struggling right now. But that is what makes the Jeremy Lin Story so compelling. I may be completely off base here, but I think Lin will have to prove himself over and over no matter which team he plays for.

      I try to catch as many Rockets games as I can just to see Lin play. I don’t know how the Jeremy Lin Story will end, but I believe Lin will ultimately triumph. And to quote Plato, ‘the first and best victory is to conquer self’.

    • I’ve been staying away from watching Rockets games, lately. Just look at the Play by Play online every now and then and then the Box Score of games. Looks like I haven’t been missing out on much as a Lin fan. Lin’s minutes have been going down. And Lin doesn’t appear to be playing loose and free. Like I said in one of my videos, Lin is all about winning and if he doesn’t feel like he’s an important part of winning games, it’s hard for him to be motivated. He’ll have to find a way to motivate himself internally. Not rely on outside factors to motivate him. Need to find confidence, motivation, joy, etc. within himself.

      I do agree, MrPingPong, that Lin will definitely have to prove himself over and over again no matter what team he’s on.

  • MrPingPong

    In case you don’t know, Howard Megdal is one of the many Lin fans…

    • Love that article–especially because the writer acknowledges that Lin has been forced to play out of position in Houston.

      Very compelling comparison between the Mets’ mistake of getting rid of Nolan Ryan and the Knick’s mistake of getting rid of Lin. In due time, Lin will be a Hall of Famer. He just needs to be in a situation that is either neutral of favorable. If he’s in a favorable situation, then Lin will be a HOF for sure. If he’s in a neutral situation, then I’d put the probability at 75% he’ll be a HOF.

    • Forthelin

      I just read the espn piece on Melo, and Lin facing off with him, and Melo overlooking Lin just as McHale is now. Nice article –


    a nice writeup on the video- with another video showing this play in action

    • MrPingPong

      Yes, there do exist a few Clutchfans veterans who appreciate Lin’s game. Unfortunately, being a team player seems to have made Lin unfit for the Rockets. Oh well, it’s the Rockets’ loss…

  • Nathan

    “….He’ll have to find a way to motivate himself internally. Not rely on outside factors to motivate him. Need to find confidence, motivation, joy, etc. within himself….”

    Yes, this is the part most close to my heart. He will find it sooner or later, and abundantly. Love to see him grow.

    Thanks Mr. JLintel for penning it.

    • Nathan, we must have some things in common if you identified with what I expressed there. I have another blog where I discuss more about these things, but haven’t had time to write in it much.

      I would love to see Lin seek out Anthony Robins or some spiritual guide. But Lin doesn’t strike me as the type to really be into this stuff, unfortunately. At least he does have his faith. That helps some, but I believe he’ll benefit immensely from a consultation with Robins or a spiritual teacher well-versed in eastern thought.

  • MrPingPong

    I think this is a Lintelligent assessment of Lin’s game since the ASB.

    Lin is going thru a shooting slump right now, no big deal. As a delusional LOF, I am absolutely confident that Lin will get over it soon. By playing Lin limited and sometime meaningless minutes, McHale is simply making basketball a little bit more challenging for Lin, that’s all. No need to Anthony Robins, I don’t think.

    And yes, Philosopher, Lin is all about winning. When playoffs time comes, when everything is on the line, Lin will go crazy and play like there is no tomorrow, should things go badly for the Rockets, just because he hates to lose. Of course, the key is for Lin to stay healthy.

  • MrPingPong

    I missed the Pistons game last night. From what I’ve read and the box score, Lin did not play well at all. The Lin highlights made by Lin fans have so little to show. Lin got poked in the eyes and got no call! Lin has to fight on so many fronts. I would not be surprised if he is physically worn out.

    The Heat is coming to H-town next. Just take it easy, JL7. Don’t over train and over prepare. Don’t sweat it! Just try to stay injury free for the rest of the season and the post season. You’ll do just fine! πŸ™‚

  • MrPingPong

    Hello Lin fans/non-fans, just making conversation here…

    It’s the Heat tonight. JL7 and DH12 have been bothered by lower back pain and missed practiced yesterday. Both participated in shoot-around today. Still, it’s game time decision for both.

    Lin is a competitor; he will play thru pain, but how effective can he be? He has not been effective offensively since the ASB.

    Here’s the latest article by CB:

    There is so much angst on both sides of the aisle. I find the whole war of words rather unpleasant. Lin is not like that though. There is not a single trace of hatred in JL7, no matter how badly people have treated him.

    I will miss the Heat game tonight. For the sake of Lin’s long term health, I am hoping that Lin does not play. To play or not to play? Lin is in a no win situation though. May be Lin should don a mask and play! πŸ™‚

    Letz go, JL7!

  • Chirico

    You don’t wonder why JL did not play as intensely as he used to do.
    After all the drama he’s been receiving, he just plays soft bball.
    Ask yourself, after you have done great work to your whatever organization then you get demoted repeatedly, would you keep putting the same or more effort in your work?
    Houston rockets are not worth his efforts any more. Period.

  • well.. at least we’re not Asik fans! lol.. also take a look at Kendall Marshall on the Lakers.. he’s not getting any PT either after anchoring the team for several games.. although one major difference between his outbreak with D’Antoni and Jeremy’s is that JLIN WON repeatedly as the starting PG. I still think Marshall’s a talent. Same with Asik (although he can’t handle some passes – butter fingers). I’m losing hope here.. i don’t think Lin will get more than 32mins anymore.. unless there are some serious injuries.. come playoffs, he’ll be criticized even more when he plays intermittent garbage minutes and mails in 1 for 7 fga. the future definitely seems bleak here for Lin.. as for “hate”.. well.. i have heard from a friend that is an associate of Lin’s that although he doesn’t “hate” mchale.. he definitely does NOT like playing for him.. i wonder why? πŸ˜‰

    • MrPingPong

      Lin has a bad back. Dunno how long it’s been. This could explain his shooting slump. I’d rather see Lin put on a suit and sit out the next few games instead of playing limited minutes and being totally ineffective. Lin will faces criticisms no matter what. If he sits out due to injury, LOHs will say Lin is not tough enough to play in the NBA. If he plays badly because of injury, LOHs will say Lin is not tough enough to play in the NBA! Sad bunch of people!

      As to what Lin “really” thinks of McHale, check out this video at around the 4:45 min mark when Lin was asked if McHale helped him much.

      May be it’s just me, but I see Lin hesitate a little before responding. Of course, Lin always says the right thing. I love this guy! πŸ™‚

      • Hey, MrPingPong! Thanks for keeping the conversation going here. I haven’t been keeping up with the Rockets or Lin. That video is very telling about what Lin thinks of McHale. It’s not just you, I also see Lin hesitating. It’s pretty clear to me what Lin thinks of McHale, even though he isn’t able to verbalize it, because he’s a public figure. What Lin thinks of the way McHale treats him is pretty much what we think of how McHale treats Lin.

  • MrPingPong

    Hello Lin fans/non-fans,

    I missed watching the Magic game last night, just listened to the first half on the radio while driving. So Lin is still stuck in the mud, shooting 1 out of 4 and missed both FTs after being knocked down pretty hard. Lin acknowledged his slump in his recent blog and relied on his God to get through it.

    I am not a religious person, so religion does not work for me. I just hope that it works for Lin.

    Pacers are next. Letz go, JL7! Make some baskets during your 15 min of play, OK! πŸ™‚

  • MrPingPong

    Hello Lin fans/non-fans, just trying to keep the conversation going here…

    Jenny Dial Creech of Houston Chronicle reported that “Jeremy Lin said his back is feeling much better today than it has in weeks.” So it seems like Lin has been bothered by his back for weeks. Let’s hope that Lin can break out of his slump tonight against the Pacers.

    The Pacers in some sort of mini-slump themselves. Their stars, Hill and George, are playing hurt. Hibbert’s numbers are down “back to earth” as well. In contrast, the Rockets are on a roll. So on paper, the Rockets should win tonight. Ticket prices for Rockets home games have soared, especially for tonight’s game, a little bit more than what I’m willing to spend.

    Letz go, JL7!

  • MrPingPong

    Hello Lin fans! Wow! Did y’all watch the Portland game last night?

    Lin played the last 5 min and a half of the 3rd and scored a 3 ptr, then continued to play the full 4th and scored 10 pts, and then the full OT and scored 6 pts, including the clutch 2 FTs that sealed the deal for the Rox. LOFs like myself know Lin is capable of such performance all along. Mr. 4th Quarter is now Mr. OT as well. πŸ™‚

    I watched the Pacers game too. When Lin missed his first wide open trey there, I said to myself, ‘Oh no…” But then, you know the rest of the story… Lin is back! πŸ™‚

    Some tidbit in case you don’t know. I was listening to Houston’s Sporttalk 790 interviewing McHale during the Portland pre-game. McHale revealed that Lin had been administered steroid shots that were, in McHale’s own words, “legally approved” to help his back pain. So now we know Lin has been playing hurt all along for a while.

    Let’s hope Lin has fully recovered in order to play the way he is capable of play. Barring injuries to Rockets key players, the Rockets will beat OKC tomorrow night! Lin will boss! πŸ™‚

    • I didn’t watch the Blazers game. Looks like I missed a great game. I think the Rockets have beat the Blazers more than any other team now. So, it’s Lin’s back that’s been causing him to struggle. That’s good to know.

      • MrPingPong

        In case you don’t know it, Tina Wang has the longest Lin highlights:

        One can tell Lin is looking to attack and shoot first instead of pass first. The tremendous burst of speed of his first step is back.

        • Great highlights! Thanks for sharing. I also didn’t watch the OKC game.

  • MrPingPong

    I missed the OKC game tonight. I was able to listen to most of the 4th quarter on the radio though. From what I read, D12 did not show up and Bev got too caught up in his “duel” with Westbrook. Lin’s stats are so-so. What happened?

    Oh well, onto the Bulls! Letz go, JL7!

  • MrPingPong

    Check out this site for the OKC game archive.

    A photo of a trainer working on Lin’s back seems to indicate that Lin is still having back problems.

  • MrPingPong

    Hello everyone, just making conversation here…

    Take a look at this Lin vs OKC highlights video, if you haven’t done so.

    Right around the 4:17 min mark, one of the game commentators says, ‘when Jeremy Lin is on the floor, the ball moves, bodies move…” πŸ™‚ Not surprising to LOFs, but unfortunately, McHale does not see it that way, otherwise he would let Lin run the floor so the ball won’t get “sticky”.

    Anyway, McHale is not gonna change. The Rockets have been winning and one cannot argue against success. As a LOF, I can only hope that Lin recovers fully from his back injury and stay healthy for the rest of the season and way into the playoffs. Lin will play hurt , but he can only be effective when he is healthy. Speaking of back injury, I believe D12 is playing with a sore back too. I like D12. He has not missed a game so far. He has given it all.

    The Rockets are up against the red hot Bulls tonight. Letz gooo, JL7!

  • Forthelin

    Terrific posts, Mr. PingPong. Looks like Lin was the only player to show up against the Bulls tonight. Hope Lin’s back improves naturally.

    • MrPingPong

      Thanks Forthelin! I did not watch the Bulls game tonight. I was able to listen to the 2nd and 3rd quarters on the radio while driving though. From what I’ve gathered on the Internet, LOHs are in hiding right now. A few of them are actually converting to LOFs. And original LOFs like myself are shaking their heads at the way McHale is jerking Lin around. What’s new? Our Philosopher has been right about McHale all along.

      Check this out, in case you haven’t seen it:

      Heat is next! Keep working on your back, JL7, and letz goooo!

  • MrPingPong

    Hello everyone,

    It’s like the day after tomorrow here in H-town, not because the Rockets lost to the Bulls last night, because of the pathetic way the starters played on national TV. I have a simple theory on why the Rockets starters did not show up last night: McHale has been riding Harden, Parsons and to some extent, Bev, like “freaking Secretariat” and now they are just running on empty. As to Howard, I think he is playing hurt.

    Ironically, it may be a blessing in disguise that Lin does not play heavy minutes. By playoffs time, Lin will probably be the only player left in the regular rotation that has plenty of fuel left to explode! NBA pundits keep saying that the Rockets need a third key player. Well, LOFs like myself think Lin is that third key player, hidden in plain sight! Unfortunately, LOFs’ view does not count. Sad story! πŸ™

    • ashley

      I feel that this Bulls game is worth memorizing in that all the Rockets’ starters failed miserably to make a stark contrast to our boy, who got 21 points–the highest on the team–in less than 24 minutes’ playing time with no turnovers. (Howard and Harden combined to get 20 points with 12 turnovers; Parsons went 1-11; and Beverley played the most time of all with 6 points.)

      Obviously the God of Basketball was with the Bulls only–they kept making their 3s–with a high 73% shooting rate, as the announcer said in the 3rd quarter, while the Rockets couldn’t but kept doing it except for Lin, who penetrated and scored. Even though Lin was the only hot hand, he still didn’t play much PG or get much playing time–Beverley handled the ball more and was the only starter that played in the 4th quarter, which had to serve to show how much McHale favors Beverley.

      McHale said he didn’t know why the team didn’t “come to play” while in fact it should just be the starters. He kept playing his starters in the hope that things would turn around until the loss was too huge. Some fans complained that McHale gave up too early and would’t let Lin play through the 4th since Lin could have scored more. But I doubt if Lin could make a big difference when they were down by more than 24 points.

      • MrPingPong

        Yeah, you are probably right, Ashley, that Lin would not make a difference with less than 8 min left in the game and the Rockets down by 25 points, since no one else in the team showed up to play. This was a regular season game that the Rockets could afford to lose. But if this was a playoffs game, then McHale had better let Lin play. And Lin would certainly want to play and win!

        Take a look at this highlights video at around the 6:40 min mark.

        See how Lin was trying to pump up his teammates? Lin is not the kind of guy who would give up and fall over, no matter how tough things get. I love this man!

        • ashley

          Indeed, if pulling Lin out is any indication, then McHale did give up too early ’cause the Bulls starters were still on the court. Well, actually the game is not worth memorizing for the Rockets ’cause except Lin, it was a total disaster–poor shooting, poor coaching, and no fighting spirit! They just looked like a very sorry team.

  • ashley

    Many Lin fans probably have learned about a summer trade plan of Morey’s, which is to get the Knicks’ Carmelo to form the Rockets’ big three by trading Lin and Asik. But this would largely depend on Phil Jackson, who’ll be the Knicks’ new president, as well as Carmelo’s intention.

    The article mentioned Morey’s “old-school instincts” and that explains a lot why our Lin has been treated like a scrub on the Rockets ’cause McHale is also an old school who only believes in his star players. I’d like that Lin gets out of Houston and back to NY, but I suspect Jackson is an old school too, who would likely keep a superstar, so I don’t expect the plan to pull off.

  • MrPingPong

    I found this post by Weifang on quite interesting!

  • MrPingPong

    Hello folks!

    It’s game day for Lin and the Rockets! The game will be broadcasted by ABC. Both the Heat and the Rockets are trying to stop their 2-game losing streak. Which team will show up? I hope both. That way Lin’s bossing of the game will be that much more significant! Yes, I bet on Lin every time.

    Heat loss? Heat check? Letz gooo, JL7! -)

  • MrPingPong

    Hello everybody,

    It’s been a while since anybody posted here. I’ve missed quite a few Rockets games lately, including the Clippers game. πŸ™

    Actually, I was able to catch the last 6 min of that game, just in time to witness Lin missing a wide open trey and a layup. From reading the stats and various game reviews, Lin did not play well. LOHs had a field day everywhere, especially on Clutchfans! Yes, I do read Clutchfans because I do find good stuffs there, like comments by torocan, a very basketball savvy person, I think.

    I got curious and google for “torocan basketball” and found this link:

    Apparently, this is the same torocan that posts on Clutchfans.

    Anyway, I digress… Back to the Clippers game. Lin himself was not happy about his performance in the post game interview. But he had the right attitude: move forward.

    Ok, so let’s move forward. It’s Rockets vs Nets in Brooklyn tonight. gives a pretty good preview of the game.The Nets are red hot, winning 13 straight at home. They are looking for number 14 tonight. Since Brook Lopez, their star center, dropped out with a season ending injury, they went small ball and have been tremendously successful. Rockets will have their hands full tonight, playing without D12 and Bev. TJ was sick and is a game time decision. Rockets fan sites such as Thedreamshake and Clutchfans seem to have written off the game because Bev is not playing.

    Oh well, Lin does not get any respect around here. But he owns New York and will proceed to own Brooklyn tonight! πŸ™‚

    Letz gooo, JL7!

  • Forthelin

    Didn’t watch the game, but Lin seems to have done okay, with 16 points, 4 rebounds, and a steal, only 2 assists. ESPN reported Mchale frustrated with the lack of ball movement–very curious if he meant Lin or Harden. Harden was 4/10 but shot a whooping 16 fts. If anyone watched the game, please report!

    • MrPingPong

      I did not watch the Nets game either, just listened to the first quarter on the radio while driving. Here’s a long Lin highlights in case you haven’t seen it.

      From the above highlights, I notice the following “missed” assists by Lin:

      Q1, 11:27 min: ball to DMO near the basket, DMO missed the hook shot.
      Q2, 3:45 min: ball to wide open Garcia who air-balled his trey.
      Q2, 1:24 min: oop to Parsons who could not quite catch the ball to dunk it; dunno if they called it a TO or not.
      Q3, 11:09 min: ball to Asik right under the basket, but Asik could not finish.
      Q3, 8:23 min: ball to Harden who was on his way to the basket but Harden got fouled and could not finish.
      Q4, 6:27 min: ball to Asik near the basket but Aski fumbled.

      So Lin was moving the ball around, passing the ball to the open men, but they could not finish for one reason or another. I don’t know about the rest of the game, but from the above highlights, Lin seemed to be playing his style of aggressive basketball. His energy level seemed high, indicative that his back and knee injuries are behind him.

      I scanned various fan sites to read fans’ reactions to the game. Some people are questioning McHale matching up Lin against Collison in the Clippers game and Lin against Livingston in the Nets game. Ha, what can I say? πŸ™‚

      I like to read Clutchfans mainly because of torocan. Here is one of his posting to analyze Lin’s overblown TO problem.

      Now, onto the Raptors game tonight… I think Lin will do even better. The question is will his teammates trust him and believe in him?

      • Fothelin

        Thanks, Mr. PingPong, terrific sources!

      • Thanks for the links, MrPingPong! Yep, there were lots of missed assists from the highlights. Lin still gets a lot of cheers in New York, I noticed.