Jeremy Lin must be stopped, and since NBA defenses aren’t doing the job, it’s time for ex-boxers to step in. Entering the ring is Floyd Mayweather:
“Jeremy Lin is a good player but all the hype is because he’s Asian. Black players do what he does every night and don’t get the same praise. Its OK for ESPN to give their opinion but I say something and everyone questions Floyd Mayweather. I’m speaking my mind on behalf of other NBA players. They are programmed to be politically correct and will be penalized if they speak up. Other countries get to support/cheer their athletes and everything is fine. As soon as I support Black American athletes, I get criticized.”
I don’t know what the f**k he’s talking about. Does him being Asian help with the hype? Probably, but only because it adds to the underdog story where you don’t expect little Asian guys (or Indian, hispanic, etc) guys to make it in the league. It’s been a league of predominantly black and white players, so when a little sprout of rice is making a name for himself, it adds to the story. So Mayweather can suck it.
How do you stop Lin? You have to be creative.
Jerryd Bayless’ inner Jeremy Lin
Bayless carries a Jeremy Lin deep inside him, it’s there in his heart, it just happens to be a little impatient, inefficient, and lacking court-vision. For this game though, Bayless needs to channel that recklessness and take it to Jeremy Lin. They say that the best defense is a great offense, and in Bayless’ case, it’s all about cranking to Chuck Mode Level 99 and tiring Lin out on defense, even though the offense is likely to be bastardly inefficient. If all goes well, Bayless steals the show, if he fails, then at least we’ll have someone to blame.
Motivating Rasual Butler
How do you test someone’s resolve and mental strength? Put him at centerstage with all the weight on the world on him. After blowing the game with the 5-second violation, Butler is down and out, and all that can bring him back in the good graces of his coach is a complete destruction of Lin. It’s time for the old SF-on-PG matchup, with shades of Scottie Pippen on John Stockton ringing true. Put Butler on Lin – single-coverage, no help, and watch Butler rises like a phoenix out of the ashes. I can already imagine ESPN’s headline on Sportscenter – Lin Served By the Butler!
Relax yo, it’s Casey
The Raptors now “boast” the league’s 18th ranked defense, and the ACC is about as close to a fortress as it’s been since Oakley left town. Casey will no doubt devise a plan that will take into account New York’s 25th ranked 3-point field goal percentage, and a ridiculously paced offense which somehow manages to be 23rd in the league. Casey’s plan could be to “make Lin beat you” by leaving mediocre role players like Stoudemire and Anthony to chuck away into the cool Toronto night from the perimeter. All kidding aside, we can’t be getting killed on the pick ‘n roll because quick PG/great PnR PF has been the Raptors’ death sentence over the last decade. Best thing would be to hedge every time with a combo of James Johnson/Ed Davis (assuming Johnson checks him), this means two athletic players with good reach trying disrupting his passes. The flip side is matching him for quickness with Bayless on defense, I don’t think that’s going to fly.
Solomon Alabi is our Jeremy Lin
Jeremy Lin two weeks ago was a nobody. Solomon Alabi today is a nobody. Transformation time indeed. Solomon “Steal The Show” Alabi is the perfect distraction for the ACC tonight. Everybody is looking forward to Jeremy Lin tonight, but if Alabi’s name is announced in the starting lineup, the focus will shift from the anticipation of seeing Lin in action, to wondering just what the hell Alabi is doing on the floor. An early touch and a score against Tyson Chandler and this Lin talk is put to bed. I heard the little bugger thrives on attention, best to deflect it to the Nigerian giant.
Losing isn’t a problem
While Lin is providing a boost to the low Knick ratings by winning games for them, the Raptors have no such issues themselves. It’s clear that basketball fans are so starved in this city that they’ll come out and watch anything (at least those who can’t come to terms with the NCAA), and a Jeremy Lin explosion resulting in a Raptors loss wouldn’t exactly turn the average fan off, and if anything, might make them curious enough to buy a ticket in wonderment of who else might be coming to town to lay the smack down.Follow @raptorsrepublic