Was it a good year for Jeremy Lin? Debatable. He got out of Houston, but landed with the Los Angeles Lakers, playing next to Kobe Bryant and under a terrible head coach in Byron Scott. In 2015, his contract will run out. He’s in a tough spot career-wise and beyond his talent which doesn’t always show through bad roles and limited playing time, and a little bit of luck can take him a long way.
What is this luck? It’s never been defined, and never will be. It’s things that are going to happen that might not be possible to explain. But in his current situation, unless Lin stops having bad shooting nights and all of a sudden convinces (what should be perfectly clear to everyone) Byron Scott that he’s a better and more useful player than Ronnie Price, simply working hard might not put him in the spot he should be at by now.
Lin has one very good game followed by a bad one. It’s been the story all season long. He wasn’t supposed to be the starter, but then Steve Nash went down, so Lin got the role in the lineup. But that meant playing next to Kobe Bryant. For someone who needs the ball in his hands to be effective, that isn’t a good pairing. And so Lin fell to the bench, playing behind a borderline D-League player in Ronnie Price, who once in blue moon catches fire from beyond the arc, earning him another year in the league.
Lin is fighting misconceptions and wrong perceptions. About being soft, about being a bad defender, and against all those who have been targeting him, hoping for his fall ever since he came out of nowhere in 2012 and took New York by storm for a short while. Maybe he isn’t the superstar he was for a short while, but he’s a much better player than being a backup on a bad team and playing 15-20 minutes a night.
It’s not all about what others have done to Lin. His performances have been inconsistent because of him as well, not just because of the situation and the treatment from Byron Scott. But being the only one (or one of a rare few) being held accountable for mistakes is a terrible position to be in. One which no one deserves, especially not someone who is always about the team and other teammates above everything else, unlike others on this team.
Despite what most of our parents told us, working hard and being good at what you do doesn’t always push you forward in life. Luck and connections help you just as much and maybe even more. And in 2015, Jeremy Lin, besides needing to improve, be more consistent and simply make the most of the opportunities given to him, needs some things to go his way.