So in the last game vs. the Wizards, Lin was given a chance to play, but he just had an off night and went 0 for 10. That was on Lin. In tonight’s game, Lin turned things around and was hot, but Byron Scott sat Lin at the 3:24 minute mark of the 3rd quarter and Lin never returned to the game, even though he was instrumental in keeping the Lakers in the game in the 3rd quarter. I actually even thought that BS would put Lin back in early in the 4th, like around the 8 minute mark, because Lin looked like he was really feeling it tonight. Lin was able to drive past Rondo at will.
I kept waiting and waiting for Lin to be checked back into the game in the 4th quarter, but it never happened. Then when the Celtics really blew the game out very late in the 4th I didn’t expect Lin to return and he didn’t. The other insane thing that happened is that BS left Kobe in the game late in the 4th even though the Lakers had no chance of winning the game. So nothing made any sense tonight. The only thing I can think of why BS would leave Kobe in the game is so Kobe could pad his stats. There really is no other explanation for it.
I try to stay away from conspiracy theories, but after what happened in tonight’s game, I can’t think of any explanations that make sense for taking Lin out and not putting him back in in the 4th. Lin was actually doing well tonight and could have been pivotal in leading the Lakers to a win, because the Lakers were still in this game well into the 4th quarter. And it’s not like Ronnie Price was doing well, tonight. So either BS is the dumbest, most insane coach ever, or there is something else going on behind the scenes. Normally, I don’t think the front office meddles too much with coaching duties, but that may be what is going on. Otherwise, nothing can explain BS’s decision to not play Jeremy Lin in the 4th. If defense is the reason, then BS is the dumbest, most insane and blindest coach ever, because even if you think Lin wasn’t playing good defense, it’s not like Ronnie Price was that much better and what Lin provided on offense far outweighed whatever Price was providing on defense (if, in fact, Price was providing anything better than Lin on defense).
So, the only thing I can think of is that the front office has no interest in winning this season. Their primary interest this season is to make sure Jeremy Lin re-signs as a back up point guard and make sure Kobe Bryant finishes off his career with great stats.
You see, unlike a lot of other NBA owners, for the Buss’s the Lakers is their only source of income. They know Jeremy Lin generates a lot of interest that is good for business, but they’re not that keen on Lin’s basketball prowess. So they don’t see Lin as a starting PG, yet they really want to keep Lin as a back up PG for next season.
Since Lin is a free agent next season, in order to make this happen, they want to make sure Lin doesn’t shine. Because if Lin shines, he’ll generates too much interest from other teams and can command a big contract. This explains why BS caps Lin’s minutes pretty much at 30 minutes and it also explains why BS seems to bench Lin also when Lin is doing well. This may explain why Scott benched Lin in the Timberwolves game, even though Lin was the best Lakers of the night. Normally, I don’t buy into all this conspiracy theory, but I really can’t think of any reasons (rational or otherwise) for how Lin was benched in tonight’s game vs. the Celtics.
I think the Lakers are hoping that the only offers Lin will get in the off-season are offers to be a back up PG. And they’re hoping that when Lin weighs everything, he’ll decide to take the Lakers’s offer for him to be their back up PG, since Lin would rather be a back up PG in LA than with other teams. One of the reasons is that Lin likes residing in LA and Lin likes the LA Fan Base. I’m hoping that if this conspiracy turns out to be true, it will get leaked out widely to media outlets around the nation so team owners are aware of what the Lakers are trying to do. It would be great if you can do your part in spreading the word on this. One of the things I plan to do is to tweet NBA owners/Gms/coaches/major media outlets, etc. about this and I would encourage you to do the same.
If we don’t spread the word, then the Lakers strategy is going to work, because it’s going to be very hard to shine with less than 20 minutes per game. I don’t care how great you are. Getting less than 20 minutes a game is going to make a player very inconsistent. Minutes are the most important thing to a player’s game. So it’s going to be very tough for Lin, going forward, to really showcase what he can do and other GMs will be laughed at if they give Lin an attractive offer (not just for money but for Lin to be their starter, which is way more important than the money).
I may be wrong, but I don’t think BS has a thing against Lin in the same way that McHale did. BS just doesn’t have full confidence in Lin. But since Lin did well tonight (only played 19:19 minutes and finished with 14 points on 5 of 8 shooting), that doesn’t explain Scott’s benching of Lin tonight, because he should have had confidence in Lin tonight. Who knows, maybe Scott is THAT blind that he couldn’t see that Lin was feeling it tonight. If so, then I’m speechless at that level of bias, stupidity and insanity. I don’t see how ANYONE, no matter how biased you are, can’t see that Lin was feeling it tonight and should have been in the game early in the 4th to give the Lakers a chance of wining. Also, the fact that Lin came off of an 0 and 10 game is all the more reason to ride Lin in order to build Lin’s confidence and allow him to get his rhythm back, after having an off game the other night. If you’re a normal coach, this is EXACTLY what you would do.
So to me, either BS is really insane and biased against Lin or there is something very fishy going on behind the scenes. There’s no other explanation for one of the strangest things I’ve witnessed in an NBA game. And it’s disturbing why none of the Lakers’s commentators made a big deal about it. Because it was a very big deal. The fact that Kobe was still on the quart was also something the commentators should have made a big deal of. But I guess commentators don’t want to rock the boat, because they want to keep their jobs.
It’s also notable that this very strange management of Lin’s minutes happened against the Celtics. Rondo will also be a free agent in the off season and it is widely speculated that he will leave. So the Celtics is just the team that would be interested in a player like Lin possibly to replace Rondo. So if the conspiracy theory holds true, then the Lakers organization would have a strong interest in keeping Lin in check, especially for this game. So that’s another reason to believe in the conspiracy theory.
Regardless of the reasons, it’s all very disturbing and Lin’s career is going to be further hampered by, yet, another organization and coach. I’m disgusted by all of it, because after this season, it’s going to be nearly impossible for Lin to show that he is clearly a starting PG in this league and a star in this league. I don’t mean to sound depressing, but if there is a concerted effort to maintain the image of Lin as nothing more than a good back up PG, then I think it’s pretty much over for Lin’s career in terms of his chance of being a star NBA player.
It will take another perfect storm for Lin to be given his chance, because if he’s going to be taken out of the game when his stats get too good all season, then I don’t think he’ll generate much interest in the off-season and pretty much wherever Lin goes, he’ll be considered a back up PG. The only chance Lin has is if he somehow finds himself with a coach who’s open-minded and will actually capitalize on Lin’s strengths and legitimately allow Lin to fight for his starting spot. So, hopefully, that will happen. We’ll see, but I’m not optimistic. As for the rest of this season, it’s going to be pretty depressing being a Lin fan, because I think there is a concerted effort by the front office to keep Lin’s stats down. I still can’t believe I’m actually buying into that conspiracy theory, because it just seems so far-fetched. But after tonight’s game, I really can’t think of any other explanations. What happened with how Lin was benched was beyond strange!
Anyway, let me know what you think, because right now apart from the reasons I’ve given, I really don’t know what to think about how Lin has been misused and mismanaged with the Lakers so far–especially in tonight’s game.