It’s really a weird thing, because as much as Knicks fans grew to love Lin last year, fans have quickly turned their backs on him. Now, I understand that he’s no longer with the team, pronouncing him as an enemy, but what Jeremy Lin did for Knicks fans, as well as the city of New York, should not be forgotten.
For the first time in more than a decade, Knicks basketball was fun. There was hope. Sure, the signing of Amare Stoudemire was the first pin to drop, and the trade for Carmelo Anthony was next, but the team was still filled with veterans, good ones at that. Lin was young. He was surprising. He left Knicks fans to ponder how high the ceiling really was. He was the great hope of New York.
When the front-office made the decision to part ways with Lin, it was one of the team’s more controversial moves. A 23-year old point, without a full season of games under his belt, with unlimited marketing potential, and awarded bird-rights which allowed the Knicks to go beyond the salary cap to re-sign him. It all sounded too good to be true. I guess Glen Grunwald and co. agreed, as they chose to refrain from matching the Rockets’ ‘poison pill’ and trade for Raymond Felton, instead.
Just like that, Jeremy Lin was gone. Many fans were heartbroken, understandably so. But he was gone.
Tonight, when Lin is introduced to the Garden faithful, there’s really no telling what kind of response he will receive. One thing is for sure, though: He should be awarded with a standing ovation.
Thank you, Jeremy Lin, for everything you did for the Knicks, as well as New York, during your time here!