Sometimes in sports, extraordinary things happen that people just cannot explain. Seemingly average players can have a special night to make the fans go home happy. During the 2011-12 NBA season, few people had heard of the New York Knicks point guard Jeremy Lin. Then one fateful game changed everything, and ‘Linsanity’ was born.
Jeremy Lin went undrafted from Harvard and after one year with the Warriors was traded to the Knicks. The Californian became the first American of Taiwanese descent to play in the NBA, and this was just one of the many incredible things Lin did during ‘Linsanity.’
Lin was pretty much a permanent fixture on the Knicks’ bench during the 2011-12 season and didn’t get a chance to show his skills until February 2012. It was in a game against the New Jersey Nets in their final season playing out of NJ. Lin checked into the game and proved just how good he was by finishing the game with 25 points.
The haul seemingly came out of nowhere, but the point guard wasn’t just about scoring points. He finished that game with seven assists, five rebounds, and led the Knicks to a 99-92 victory. Lin was the only thing people were talking about after the game.
Keeping it up
Any player in the NBA can have one good game though, the challenge now for Lin was to keep this form going. He was given a starting spot in the next game against the Jazz, and he didn’t disappoint. Lin finished with 28 points and had basically gone from a player no one had heard of to a hero overnight. People were going crazy for Lin, but he was to be thrown one huge test as he went up against Kobe Bryant and the Lakers.
A standout moment
With much of the world now beginning to pay attention to ‘Linsanity,’ Jeremy Lin found himself lining up against Kobe. The game was played at Madison Square Garden, and Lin blew the roof off the place.
He finished the game against the Lakers with a career-high 38 points and brought yet another victory to the Knicks. Lin said his form was “indescribable” and he had not only beaten the Lakers, but even outsourced Bryant in the process. It was clear now to people that Lin had serious skills, and would no longer be underrated.
Another amazing game from Lin game as the Knicks went up against the Raptors. With the game tied, Lin had the ball with just over ten seconds remaining. Lin hung onto the ball for as long as he dared and released a three-point effort with no time remaining for the Raptors to come back. The hot went straight in, and Lin was immediately surrounded by his teammates after scoring the game-winning shot.
Lin had managed to drag the underperforming Knicks from the bottom of the Eastern Conference into the playoff spots. Sadly for the point guard, ‘Linsanity’ was over after just 26 games as he had to undergo surgery, meaning he missed the playoffs. Even though it was over almost as quickly as it began, ‘Linsanity’ will forever be remembered by New York fans as he almost single-handedly turned their season around. In 2019 Lin was traded to the Raptors and helped them become the NBA champions.
‘Linsanity’ might be long gone, but it was a lot of fun while it lasted. Lin has struggled to hit the heights of his time at the Knicks, but he, and the New York fans, will always remember that time fondly.