Coach Clifford Appears to be Very High on Jeremy Lin

I just wanted to share a recent interview with Lin in Chinese with English subtitles, because it’s a pretty detailed interview that provides a lot of reasons to be optimistic for this upcoming season.

The first 6 minutes or so of this interview is where Lin discusses his free agency and reasons why he chose the Hornets. Lin also goes into detail about conversations he’s had with coach Clifford. The best part of this interview for me is at around the 5 minute mark, when Lin says that Coach Clifford would start him if Lin plays well and the team needs him to start. This is great news, because it isn’t set in stone that Lin will be relegated to the bench all season. If coach Clifford is really sincere when he told Lin this (and there’s no reason to believe that coach Clifford isn’t sincere), then this shows that Clifford really believes in Lin–maybe even as much as D’Antoni does.

Apparently, after the regular season ended, coach Clifford told everyone that Lin was one of two players that Clifford wanted to get for next season. So it was really Clifford’s idea to get Lin. It’s great for a player’s career when the coach really wants you to be on the team. This was definitely not the case with the Rockets and probably not the case with the Lakers, as well. I think with the Rockets and Lakers, it was the owner and front office that wanted Lin, not the coaches. At the end of the day, it is the coach who has control of the player’s minutes, so the coach is the most important factor in a player’s success on a team.

The other big thing is that Clifford told Lin that Lin won’t be replaced if he has a few bad games, like he did in other teams. That Lin will be given a lot of room to play through mistakes. This type of trust is exactly what Lin had with D’Antoni and is what Lin has completely lacked ever since Linsanity. So the fact that coach Clifford told Lin this is huge for Lin. Lin is at his best when he feels like he has the trust of the coach. And since Lin’s hyper-aggressive style of play comes with a fair share of turnovers, it is critical to have a coach who understands this lets Lin take risks on the court. Also, inherent in this coach Clifford’s statement is the implication that Lin hasn’t really been given fair treatment by other teams. It’s awesome that Clifford appears to empathize with Lin’s unfair treatment on other teams.


Having a coach like Clifford is a dream come true for Lin. I think Lin fans have reasons to be very optimistic and excited for this upcoming season. Lin fans know that Lin has the proper skill set to be a great PG. All Lin has been missing is the right coach and opportunity. With the Hornets, at least, he does have the right coach. And if Lin stays healthy and performs at a high level early on in the season, there is a chance that Lin may even end up starting midway through the season and into the playoffs. I know I’m getting way ahead of myself, but right now, the potential for Lin on this team with this coach is very high. I don’t see how Lin can suddenly disappoint coach Clifford, since Lin will always be Lin and Clifford has already liked what he has seen in Lin even when Lin hasn’t been allowed to really show what Lin can do. Imagine if Lin is finally free to really show what he can do? Get ready for Linsanity 2.0!

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  • MrPingPong

    As stated in my recent posting, the more I read about the open and honest communication between Lin and coach Clifford, the more optimistic I feel about Lin’s upcoming season as a Hornets.

    Barring unforeseen injuries, Lin will deliver if he is given a fair shake. A fair shake is all I ask. Coach Clifford seems like a genuine man. I am highly optimistic that he will give Lin a fair shake by allowing Lin to play his game thru mistakes et al.

    The big question mark to me is Kemba. How will Kemba take all of these Linsanity stuffs? Kemba and Big Al had a down year due to injuries. Batum had the worst year of his career last season, due to injury as well. These three are the highest paid Hornets and are the de-facto starters. So the second question I raise is, will they perform up to their potential?

    About two more months till preseason! And the Heat will host the Hornets on Oct. 4, 2015 in the preseason opener:

    Can’t wait! 🙂

    • I have the same concerns as you, MrPingPong, about Kemba. Hopefully everyone sets their own egos aside and plays just to win games. But, unfortunately, our human failings often get in the way. So, we’ll see. At least I’m hopeful that Lin will have Coach Clifford in his corner if any egos get in the way of playing team ball.

  • old & in the way

    Do you suppose that Kobe Bryant knows who Ronda Rousey is?

  • I like Jeremy. I really do. Who was it that said this?

    • old & in the way

      That is why we are all being cautiously optimistic. But Byron Scott was never as accommodating and receptive to Jeremy as Coach Clifford has been so far. We will just have to wait and see how Jeremy is treated once the season begins. Hopefully the Hornets positive expressions towards Jeremy will match their actions once the games begin. I think there is reason to feel more optimistic than in the past and hope we do not have to “eat our optimism” yet again once the season begins. Jeremy deserves a good fit and equitable treatment. May he have found both in Charlotte. Once again only time will tell. But as fans of Jeremy we are already aware that talk can be very cheap. We shall see this time if things may finally be different for Jeremy and those of us who want to see him fulfill his potential whatever it may be. He only needs to be given a chance. May he get it in Charlotte.

      • Well said, “old & in the way”! Thanks!

  • MrPingPong

    Just to keep things alive here during the off-season, here is an analysis of Lin’s game by a hardcore Hornets fan:

  • I’m cautiously optimistic about the Hornets but I must say that I’m liking what I’m hearing so far.

  • Chirico

    Hi folks,

    I’d like to share this article with you.


  • MrPingPong

    Well, it’s September and Lin just posted this on his Facebook page:

    Lin seems to have come right out of one of those Beggar’s Clan (丐幫) Kungfu hero…

    • ashley

      Thanks for the link, Mr. PingPong. I love that Lin has this fun-loving nature, which must have got him through many difficult times. It was such a funny coincidence that he would meet an Olympic silver medalist in weight-lifting and dare her to lift weight–and lost, of course. Yeah, to have fun is what Lin always stresses. I think as long as he has fun on the court getting to do what he loves to do, he’s fine.

  • MrPingPong

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

    As you probably know, a couple of days ago Lin came to the Hornets’ arena to train for the first time and was denied entry by a security guard who did not recognize Lin. I dunno what y’all think, but I think it’s pretty funny. My immediate thought was Lin must have dressed up like Wayne the (Bad) Trainer. 😉

    Have a great day/night everyone wherever you are on this WEB!


    • Forthelin

      Sounds like the same thing that happened to him at Madison Square Garden. The only reason this is news, I think, is that Lin still wants people to think about the stereotypes that we hold about others and about his role in taking that on in professional basketball. Are there some ethnic groups that might have us do a double take if they showed up at an exclusive Science Robotics Conference(just making that up) or winning the math Fields Award. I like Lin’s take on this, but I’m sure haters will continue to rain hate.

  • Chirico

    There is a vote on who is the best player on Hornets roster

    BTW, What’s your best Hornet player

    Guess who is the front runner?

    Check it out.