Jeremy Lin Finally Finds a Coach/Org that will Let Him Lead and He is More than Ready

As we all know, Jeremy Lin just had his introductory press conference with the Brooklyn Nets. Although it would have been nice to see more of Lin, I’m actually glad they decided to do a press conference to introduce all of the new guys together, with the exception of a few who apparently had scheduling conflicts. I think that by not singling out Jeremy Lin, that conveys the team culture that Atkinson and Marks care so much about developing.

To be honest, the press conference wasn’t all that interesting, but the interviews afterward I found to be quite shocking (in a very good way) in some instances. Here’s an example:

Lin Strong Honest Statement at Nets Press Conferece

I’ve never heard Lin verbally express, in a public interview format, so many of the things that Lin fans have been saying in such a blunt manner all at once. Sure, I’ve heard Lin mention snippets of these things here and there, but I always felt him measuring his words. Not this time.

I’m sure Lin says these things to those close to him, but for him to be comfortable enough to verbally express this to an interviewer is shocking to me. I’ve always wanted Lin to be more blunt, publicly, about the sacrifices he’s made for all his teams and about how he’s been only limited by lack of minutes, usage and empowerment, etc. But I’ve always understood why Lin felt he has had to measure his words in the past. The reason why, Lin being this blunt now, is important is that it tells me Lin knows he has complete trust in Atkinson and the Nets organization. If he didn’t feel this way, he’d be more careful about how he phrases these things like he has been in the past. Jeremy Lin has always been extremely careful and considered with what he says to the public. So the fact that felt so comfortable to be so blunt is a great sign to me.

Also, a small detail that I think is actually quite telling, along these same lines, is that during the press conference, Lin kept referring to coach Kenny Atkinson by Atkinson’s first name: “Kenny”. Lin had to correct himself because he didn’t want to sound disrespectful. But this is a big sign to me that Lin is probably much closer to Atkinson than a lot of people think. Lin also knew Atkinson well before he became head coach, so I think it’s not natural now for Lin to call Kenny Atkinson “coach Atkinson”. It may take him some time to get used to “coach” or “coach Atkinson.”

The other great write up I saw from today is from the New York Daily News entitled: “Jeremy Lin has grown since Linsanity with Knicks, now expects to be veteran leader on Nets”. There are lots of great quotes from Lin in this article. Lin talks about Linsanity in a way that makes me feel he has really moved past Linsanity it in a very positive way, psychologically. I think for a time, he had a bit of an aversion to “Linsanity” and really wanted to distance himself from it. Now, Lin accepts that people will always link him to the “Linsanity phenomenon” and he seems more comfortable with it than I think he ever has. But at the same time, he does see it as dehumanizing, but not in a negative way. It’s a very nuanced view that I’ve kind of always wanted Lin to have about Linsanity.

I think in the past, there were a few times where it seemed like Lin felt too self-conscious the next day after he had a “Linsanity” game. I think those days are finally over for Lin and he can perform at a high level without feeling self-conscious about it. This is exactly the psychological state I want Lin to be in, so I was very glad to see him articulate it so well. Here’s the full excerpt:

“Even now, when I come back, I walk around anywhere and (Linsanity) is the only thing I hear,” Lin said at HSS Training Center. “I will be myself but I don’t really draw too many comparisons to Linsanity, the phenomenon. I am just going to keep playing. People will always kind of compare me to that. In a lot of ways, not in a negative way or a way that I am offended, but it kind of dehumanizes me to refer to me as a phenomenon. I am going to be here, keep playing my game, do the best that I can and whatever you guys want to call it, that is up to you guys.”

For me, personally, the other quote from the article that I was very pleased to see is this one:

“I am in a much different place mentally as a person than I was when I was with the Knicks. So when you talk about that platform, I want to embrace it. I am not just saying Asians. If you look at what is going on in the world and a lot of the violence that is going in the world in terms of the justice system and all these different things — that is real life. That is so much bigger than basketball. I have a voice because of basketball, to be able to talk and influence and do things that are related to things that are affecting people’s lives and things every day. That is a very unique situation.”

I think no matter our profession, I hope we are also all responsible citizens. And I’m glad that Lin understands this and is doing his part. I was glad to see Lin speaking out about #BlackLivesMatter:

Tweet to Lin about BlackLives

It’s not about picking sides, it’s about doing what you think is the right thing as a responsible citizen and speaking out on things that really matter, not just things that entertain us. This is why I’ve been so adamant about using my own very modest platform to do everything I can to prevent a Trump presidency, including writing this article. It’s an exhausting job and I can’t wait until this election is over so I don’t have to spend anymore time and mental/psychological energy on this effort.

Normally, I hate talking about politics, because I believe everyone has a right to their own political beliefs. But to me, when you have the most unqualified, unstable, unknowledgeable candidate in history this is no longer about politics. And I’m not going to stand idly by and not do something about it, even though I know it probably annoys the readers of this blog and my Twitter followers. But if I didn’t do whatever I felt I needed to do to prevent a Trump presidency and Trump becomes president, I could never forgive myself. Again, this is not about politics to me. This is about saving the country and the world from utter devastation. It’s about being a responsible citizen. I hope you all respect that and I’m sincerely sorry if you feel offended or annoyed by my efforts. That is not my intention.

Getting back to Jeremy Lin and basketball. The other really revealing thing about the NY Daily News article is how Lin approached his free agency. Here’s an excerpt:

“I made this analogy earlier, but for me, the way I was thinking of free agency was like when you invest in a startup company,” Lin said. “You don’t necessarily look at the product right then and there. That is a big part of it, but you’re kind of betting on the founder a lot of times. You’re betting on what that person is capable of doing, because sometimes as you go through the process, the final product is going to change a lot. That’s very common in startups and I feel like that’s the kind of how this is. I’m betting on certain people, I’m betting on Kenny, I’m betting on (GM) Sean (Marks), I’m betting on myself, I’m betting on Brook Lopez, I’m betting on the way I feel. If I didn’t feel like this has a chance to go where I want to go, then I wouldn’t have signed up for it.”

I was very happy to hear this, because before Lin had made his decision, you all know that I had been harassing Lin periodically on Twitter to join the Nets, my top pick for Lin by far. And one of my selling points to Lin is that Atkinson/Marks Nets is a great opportunity for him to get in on the ground floor and help build and lead a Spurs-Like culture. Here are a couple of Tweets I sent to Lin regarding this:

Tweet to Lin about Nets Startup Culture

I’m sure Lin didn’t see any of my Tweets, but it’s great, at least, to see that he was thinking along the same lines. I’m not surprised, though, because Lin is very smart and savvy about all of this.

Overall, my impression is that Lin is completely at home with the Nets and he’s more than ready to take on a much bigger role and lead the BrookLin Nets.

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.
  • MrP1ngP0ng

    Lin articulates so well. He is better and more well-rounded as a player than ever before. He is totally prepared to lead this new Nets team and win.

    Letzzz Gooo, JL7!

  • PoweredByRice

    It’s pretty clear from today’s presser that Lin feels more comfortable speaking his mind. He doesn’t feel the need to play politics or quantify his statements. He has the complete trust and backing of his coach and that is something Lin hasn’t had since D’antoni.

    And we all know what Lin does when he’s feeling confident!

    • I felt the same way as you about Lin’s presser today. It’s a new beginning for Lin.

    • MrP1ngP0ng

      Agreed, PoweredByRice.

      “I have a voice because of basketball…,” in his unassuming ways, Lin will not only speak his mind on basketball but also on social issues. Lin will make a difference.

      I am so freaking proud of this young man!

  • MrP1ngP0ng

    On a slightly separate note, I’m intrigued by the signing of AB, the former #1 draft pick by Cleveland. AB is only 23. He seems to have matured. The Nets are giving him a new life. I hope he looks to Lin for guidance. Lin will find him on the court and help him reach his potential. It will be that much more fun to see Lin connecting with AB (not Aaron Brooks!) and create headaches for the opposing teams. It will be just like the Nets have themselves the numero uno draft pick! 😉

    • Ace Pagoda

      As we have seen and learned from the JLin experience there are players out there who remain to be discovered if put into the right situation and then used properly. Hopefully AB is one of those players. I have not watched AB at all and don’t know much about his skills but it says a lot that he was drafted by professional basketball as the #1 pick, even if that pick was an error by some degrees. Hopefully Marks and Atkinson are good judges of talent as well as character and that they can see how to make AB be a contributor. He does not have to be a star because they are building a team. Working as a team is the only way the Nets are going to be able to achieve. Another interesting player being discussed is Lance Stephenson. Don’t know much about him either but from what I have read he doesn’t seem to fit in the “high character” category. Again maybe in the right situation character can be developed also. He is young too at 25 so there is still time and as a young mind still he can change his ways and become successful. All of these pro athletes have the physical tools. Where they are are not successful is in the mind. JLin has physical tools but his strength is his mind. If JLin can transmit those mental skills to his teammates then they will be successful. This is where Charlotte failed so miserably in not utilizing JLin’s mental strengths and instead catering to the owner’s desires to see success only in his way which in hindsight was wrong. The wrong mind was at work. Michael Jordan was obviously a great player but as an owner he is James Dolan in a small market. I wish the City of Charlotte could have retained JLin because they seemed like good fans but with their owner and their coach it was not a good fit.

    • Yeah, AB is one of the new Nets guys that I’m very interested to observe and excited about.

  • Ace Pagoda

    So the NBA has pulled the All Star game from Charlotte because of who can use which bathrooms. This reeks of the stupidity of political correctness. Professional sports has become politicized, though I am not naive enough to know that this is not the first instance. It is just an instance in which to make a statement. Now I will make my own little statement: while I would have subscribed to NBA TV to watch JLin in Brooklin I, Ace Pagoda, will now NOT. No NBA TV, not now not ever. Hey! This posturing is fun! Charlotte may have dodged a bullet anyways. Remember when the All Star game was in Vegas and the “fans” trashed the town and the gullible media covered it up?

    • PoweredByRice

      Um, civil rights is not “political correctness”.

      What if the law was against Asians using public restrooms?

      It’s only “PC” if it doesn’t apply to you. Don’t be so quick to disregard the rights of others.

  • Check out this awesome article from Atkinson’s perspective during Lin’s time with the Knicks:

    I have had such high expectations of Atkinson in terms of his belief in Lin. Well, from this article, I think Atkinson has exceeded these very high expectations. For Lin fans and Lin, Atkinson is a dream-come-true of a coach.

    • young Ashley

      Atkinson and Lin share too much in common not to appreciate each other–both are high character guys with strong work ethic and were closely bonded back in the Knicks days. I was intentionally playing the doubter’s role, but the Nets’ poor situation, Atkinson’s hiring, and his relationship with Lin had to make this happen, sort of like a perfect storm, in which Lin and Atkinson are going to help each other to make things work.

      I felt a bit weird when Lin referred to the coach by his first name, which sounds too casual at a press conference introducing new players. Some fans may have worries that such intimacy may cause jealousy in his teammates. But I don’t want to think that way now. I think it’s like seeing two people openly saying “I love you” to each other. To the Nets players, I believe Jeremy Lin will be the best veteran point guard / teammate they’ll ever play with and Atkinson will be the fairest and best coach they’ll ever play for.

      Someone on another Lin fansite commented that Atkinson’s side of story about Lin is missed in the Linsanity movie. Hopefully, together, they’ll write another brilliant chapter of Linsanity!

  • Linfan123

    So…try not to cry or throw up when you read this but…..just read article where Atkinson said he “envisions jeremy playing a lot alongside G. Vasquez OFF THE BALL LIKE HE DID WITH KEMBA IN CHARLOTTE” That is a depressing quote on many levels. He is very high on lin but also said “his system is not very muck like dantonis” closer to spurs. The dreaded off the ball comment yikes!

    • LinsanityFan4

      Well, hopefully it’s not that bad. Can only say that everything is still very much in flux. We need the other players to step up anyway. It would keep opposing defenses guessing, and take some pressure off Lin. As long as the team wins, Lin would be happy to be just a good teammate (and save himself for the playoffs). As we know, Lin steps up when he’s needed, which would be often, given the Nets situation. This time it’s different. It’s OK for Lin to dominate the ball. As long as the Nets make the playoffs (and the Hornets don’t, heh heh), and we have the Linsanity v2.0 vibe, I’d be happy enough.

    • Actually, my big complaint with D’Antoni during Linsanity is that Lin needed to play off the ball more. I criticized D’Antoni for being way too predictable in the way he played Lin. So I actually was happy to hear Kenny say that Lin will play off the ball, as well as be the primary PG. Of course, we’ll have to wait and see how it looks, but I think Lin playing off the ball will be a lot different with Atkinson, despite the crude reference he made to Lin playing off-ball with Kemba in Charlotte. I think he just said that as a very crude reference just as a short-hand for people, since he doesn’t really want to lay out exactly how that will look like.

      I have full faith that Atkinson and Lin understand each other on a deep level and Atkinson will play Lin even better than D’Antoni will play Lin. That’s why I kept tweeting or saying that Atkinson is better than MDA, even though Atkinson hasn’t been a head coach. I just have a hunch that he will be a better coach–at least for Lin–than MDA.

  • Chirico

    JLin, 2016-2017, is ranked #1 by fans. When the vote is not controlled by NBA or affiliated,you see something that the org in charge has been trying hard to hide.

  • Chirico

    Again, another great article! Enjoyed it every bit.
    Thanks, JLintel

  • Clockp

    I thoroughly enjoyed your article except for your inappropriate rant against Donald Trump. I could say exactly the same against one of the most corrupt, crooked, ethically disgusting and inept politicians in My lifetime, Hillary Clinton, all thoroughly documented (“Clinton cash”, “Hillary’s America”).

    • Thanks. I appreciate the comment and you speaking out. I understand your feelings about Hillary, but to say that Trump and Hillary are on par is to be mired in the wilderness of false equivalence. I can go very deeply with this, but go here if you want to understand my full thoughts on Trump:

      • Clockp

        Please do go deeply with this, so I know what you’re talking about. I read the Democratic and Republican Party platforms, Democrsts are socialists, all power to the state and its self-anointed elites running the show, we the people and our natural rights in the Devkaration of Indeoendnce a distant second. At least Trunp and the Republicans, for all their flaws, subscribe to our natural rights, seeing we the people as individuals first, government doing our bidding as we, not pokiticians, bureaucrats and their cronies, push down our throats. ,

        • Go to the link that gave you. My issue with Trump primarily has to do with his entire being. He is the most unqualified, unknowledgeable, unstable presidential candidate probably in history. No matter what you think of Clinton, Clinton is none of these things. Your biased list of negatives for Hillary will be dwarfed by this biased list of negatives from Trump:

          And your anti-endorsement of Hillary won’t come close to matching this unprecedented anti-endorsement of Trump by the Washington Post:

          Again, go to my other article that discusses all this. I’d prefer not to discuss this issue in the comments section of this article.

          • Clockp

            So to be clear on your rules for the JEREMYLINTEL site, which allows for replies, after your very lengthy opinion piece excoriating Mr. Trump, which you inserted into an article on Jeremy Lin that allows for replies and discussion, you are recusing yourself from a discussion that includes Mr. Trump?

          • I didn’t mean to place any rules by my comment. I just said that I’d prefer it if you go to the other article that is all. No biggie.

          • Clockp

            I went to both your links, nothing but opinion, as is your comment on Mr. Trump. I’m curious how you review resume’s of candidates for President, were he or she applying to run your family company; if you rely on experience, character, substantive accomplishments (IE, results, not just “being there” as a husband/wife/fly on the wall), then Barak Obama was the least qualified candidate I’ve come across in my 60 years of Presidential elections, and his performance has proven the need for thorough vetting and qualifications of candidates. Hillary Clinton doesn’t come close, hanging around the halls of congress/the White House/government doesn’t cut it with me. I don’t care about style as a President; I want PRIORITIES AND RESULTS and someone who will fight for them, not sit back and complain about “gridlock” and play the blame game; or dawdle on lesser issues like nationalizing health care, gay marriage and federally funded abortions instead of ECONOMIC GROWTH. It’s not what people say, it’s what they DO. Mr. Trump gets results; Hillary doesn’t. Regardless, I appreciate your comments and updates on Jeremy and will keep visiting your excellent site.

          • I don’t think we’re ever going to agree on Trump, but thanks for having an open mind. Much respect to you for that! And it is very big of you for continuing to visit this site because of our common interest on Jeremy Lin, despite our disagreements. One of the great things about sports/sports figures is that it can help unify which is what we need in a country that appears to be getting more and more divisive and tribalistic, unfortunately.

          • Clockp

            TOTALLY AGREE on sports as unifier, the rebel butchers ceased their atrocities in Sierra Leone when its national team played World Cup qualifiers. Maybe that could work in the Middle East.

    • PoweredByRice

      “Hillarys America” directed by convicted criminal Dinesh D’Souza. (Illegal Campaign contributions) Please do not being in radical right wing propaganda to make your point.

      • Clockp

        Please elucidate “radical right wing propaganda”, I have no idea what you’re talking about.

        • PoweredByRice

          Dinesh DSouza is not a reputable or mainstream figure. His film “Hillary’s America” is full of conjecture and speculation. Even other conservatives have described DSouza’s claims as “error-laden smear journalism”. He also blames liberals for 911.

          D’Souza is quite literally the definition of a radical right-winger. What next? Are you going to post publications by Rush Limbaugh and Allen West on here too?

      • Clockp

        I need more from you than “radical right wing propaganda”, please watch the movie then give me your critical thinking on it. I watched Michael Moore’s movies, I get his slant and out of context critiques of General Motors and “big corporations”, I’m sure you are also sensitive to people who survived communist countries and their “big institutions”, which to them are simply gangster monopolies controlled by the government that crush anyone who tries to compete, as all monopolies do. Dinesh sees the Democratic Party supporting these “big institutions”, with the appurtenant cronyism and trade off of restricting our individual freedom, free choices and ability to compete in the open markets without big government cronyism. Donald “fucking” Trump has a similar viewpoint. I’ll have further comments for you later.

  • MrP1ngP0ng

    Harvard man, same young Lin:

  • Dr. Gary Teng

    My beloved late father gave me an excellent advice when I went to college — Never discuss religion, politics, and other’s wife with strangers.

    Due to the heated debates here, I would like to make one (and only) exception here. I met Trump in person twice, one time in close confine for more than one and one-half hours and I carefully observed his every actions and moves throughout.

    In contrast to his public persona which may seem to be aloof and elegant, in private Trump is extremely approachable, humble, and friendly. I really like what I saw with my own eyes.

    Sorry for the digression. Let us focus on sports and politics in sports, but not politics per se.

    The more I learn about Marks and Atkinson through this excellent website, I more I believe that Lin made the right choice to join the Nets. How much so? I have decided to purchase a giant smart HD TV next weekend (to replace my current antique tiny B&W one) to patiently await the new NBA season. 🙂