Yes, I’ll readily admit that I’ve jumped on the Jeremy Lin bandwagon, because I’m Asian. And would I volunteer to drive Jeremy Lin’s car in New York City’s ticker tape parade if the Knicks were to take the championship? Absolutely.
On February 4, I was watching the game with my dad, who’s been a loyal Knicks fan, long before the Patrick Ewing-era. I got up to get another beer when I saw the last name “Lin” on the back of a jersey, so I sat back down. That night, Lin scored 25 points along with 7 assists. His stunning performance these past few weeks have launched him as a perpetual Facebook and Twitter presence, the inspiration for clever nicknames, including “Linderella” and “Linvincible” and of course, running commentary on the secret to his success.
Jeremy, like myself, was born in America, and has proven himself to serve as the meta-narrative for the Asian-American experience. Lin represents the ultimate intersection of dual nationalities, religious upbringing, a culturally-ingrained work ethic, and emphasis on education. All that, and he can dunk.
But him being the quintessential product of family values and a Harvard education isn’t the entire story. The Lin phenomenon has improved ratings for the nation’s biggest media market, boosted ticket and jersey sales, and has galvanized the Knicks’ comeback story.
Even the Commander-in-Chief has caught Lin fever. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said today, “It’s just a great story, and the president was saying as much this morning. It’s obviously terrific for the New York Knicks, but it’s the kind of sports story that transcends the sport itself.”
Carney continued, “So it’s a great story. And, yes, he’s very impressed and fully up to speed. I know he’s watched Lin play already and he’s seen the highlights from last night’s game.”
If you missed last night’s game, Lin made the game-winning three-pointer against the Raptors, propelling the Knicks to their sixth straight win of the season. You can watch that amazing moment…over and over again.
Like the Asian-American community, I began watching Jeremy Lin because he is the only Asian-American player out on that court, but his success is why I will continue to watch and root for him.