Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Less than a year ago, Jeremy Lin was just
hoping to make it on an NBA roster. Now, as the newest member of the Houston
Rockets, he's become a global sensation.
"It's been an unbelievable ride, just a lot of things I didn't expect to
happen in terms of just the way last season went," Lin said. "I still have to
kind of remind myself this is all happening sometimes."
The point guard became an official member of the Rockets when the New York
Knicks failed to match Houston's lucrative offer earlier this week.
"I can't believe how it all shaped up," Lin said. "For me to be able to be
here right now, I'm definitely excited and thankful.
"The thing that excites me is I know what this organization is about," Lin
added. "I was in training camp with coach McHale, and I saw how he operates
and what he expects from the team and what he's about. To me, it's something I
believe in as well and it just made sense."
So did the $25.1 million Lin will receive over the next three years playing
for the Rockets, a team that has missed the playoffs the last three seasons.
The team finished with a 34-32 mark in the work stoppage-shortened season, but
has played above .500 ball in each of the last three campaigns.
Lin was claimed off waivers by the Rockets prior to the work stoppage-
shortened season and played in a pair of preseason games for them. The day
prior to the start of the regular season, he was waived to clear payroll
space for Samuel Dalembert and then joined New York three days later.
"It's always difficult when you've obviously made an error," Rockets owner
Leslie Alexander said. "We made an error by letting him go. I think we've
rectified it now."
Lin, who went undrafted out of Harvard before playing 29 games for Golden
State during the 2010-11 season, rallied the Knicks out of a mid-season funk
thanks to his sudden emergence from a reserve to a reliable scorer and passer.
That gave rise to the "Linsanity" phenomenon.
He set the NBA on fire with his incredible February performances, scoring at
least 20 points nine times in a 10-game stretch during the month. The Chinese
native became an international highlight-reel as the first American of Chinese
or Taiwanese descent to play in the NBA.
Lin, 23, had left knee surgery in April to fix a small meniscus tear, missing
the last month of the regular season and New York's only playoff series.
He averaged 14.6 points, 6.2 assists and 3.1 rebounds in 35 games for the
Knicks last season, including 25 starts.
"He proved at the college level he was a high potential prospect," Rockets
general manager Daryl Morey said. "We checked him pretty closely. What he
showed in New York is what he can do."
Lin said he texted messages back and forth with Chinese center Yao Ming, who
played eight seasons for the Rockets before retiring from the NBA. "When
things settle down I start talking to him about different things with regards
to the city of Houston," Lin said.
The Sports Network