As if the hype for the upcoming NBA season, specifically for the hometown Houston Rockets, could not get any weirder, we bring you Linsanity, the movie. Between Dwight Howard's trips to Aspen and China, James Harden's commercials and Chandler Parsons being singlehandedly transformed into "the man who landed Howard," it's hard to imagine much more buzz surrounding a team or its players. This one may however be the most interesting and possibly the most controversial.
Two seasons ago, Linsanity gripped New York City and, thanks to the four-letter network, pretty much every Sportscenter. Jeremy Lin went from un-drafted outcast -- from teams that included the Rockets -- to the toast of Broadway. For 20-plus games, he lit up Madison Square Garden in a way few have ever been able. Because he is the first Asian American-born player to play in the NBA, it only added to his mystique. Now, there is a documentary film being released in October prior to the start of the season about the phenomena that was Linsanity and the man behind it all.
No doubt it is a compelling tale: the young dynamic player who may have been sidelined, literally, because of racist attitudes among college coaches, the emergence out of essentially nowhere and the world's biggest basketball stage. The last time a documentary about a player came out this early to this much fanfare, it was another Asian player who also played for the Rockets.
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The only flaw I see in this entire release is that Lin has not been able to sustain his star turn. Granted, he's only through one season post Linsanity and he's still a very young player on a promising Rockets team, but it is arguable that he was outplayed down the stretch last season and even sat watching in fourth quarters while Patrick Beverly, a guy who was floundering in Russian pro leagues and a substantially better defender than Lin, played the most crucial minutes.
In the trailer, it emphasizes how all Lin wanted was the ball in his hands on the biggest stage on earth. He got it and he dazzled. But being a great player is not about that one moment. It is about sustaining it over months and years.
No one, even Lin, believed he was capable of that kind of output over the course of multiple seasons and it is understandable if he was unable to live up to that series of unreal performances. But, the hype lives on and it has only increased the scrutiny on him from fans. But, he chose to participate in the documentary, so give him credit for not shying away. If the Rockets win with him at point guard, it will only add to the legend, but that's easier said than done.