“Normal” Jeremy Lin is More Than Just OK

Linsanity is over, pretty much, at least by surveying the several media outlets that went crazy over the Knicks’ point guard very recently. Jeremy Lin, however, isn’t going anywhere. He dropped 19 points and 13 assists, his fifth double double in just over three weeks. The Knicks beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 120-103, improving to 18-18 and 7-3 in their last 10 games.

It’s not only at Lin produced, it was also the turnovers, something that has been plaguing him this season, with 8 games of six turnovers or more since becoming a starter. Lin turned the ball over only once, and although Kyrie Irving and the Cavs aren’t exactly a defensive machine, Mike D’Antoni had to be happy about his point guard.

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Lin wasn’t the only point guard who did a good job. I’m not talking about Kyrie Irving, who scored 22 points and dished 7 assists. I’m talking about Baron Davis, the guy who was supposed to be starting for the Knicks this season, but came only 11 days ago, playing his fourth game of the season. He scored only 4 points, but didn’t force shots and finished with 8 assits. There’s been plenty of talk about the Knicks’ lack of depth compared to teams with similar, or bigger, aspirations.

Novak scored 17, Shumpert with 12, and the Knicks got 50 points from their bench, and gave hope that this team is more than just whatever is clicking in their starting lineup. The talk about ‘Melo and Lin not playing well together? For at least another few days, that’s not in the headlines.

Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 22 points, and it’s funny how Carmelo is no longer the main headline, for the first time in his career, no matter where he’s played. Amar’e Stoudemire? That’s a different story. The Knicks don’t need him to double double every night, especially with Tyson Chandler looking like the Center they thought they signed, finishing with 13 points and 15 rebounds, but Stoudemire is fading away behind all the Lin Festival and Carmelo’s natural presence.

Beating the Cavs is fine, but the Knicks, who see themselves as a legitimate threat to the Heat and the Bulls if everything click for them the rest of the way, must have the All-Star version of Stoudemire, at least in effort, if they want to make these playoffs (if they make them) more memorable then getting swept by the Celtics in 2011.

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