I had high hopes for the Knicks going into this season. I thought Carmelo and Amar'e would play better being together from the beginning. The lack of a true point guard was a glaring weakness, though. The team signed mercurial veteran Baron Davis, but he's been sidelined by injury the whole season. Carmelo has three nagging injuries that have kept him out of the last few games, and Amar'e has been away from the team mourning his older brother's death.
In the midst of all this, 23-year-old point guard Jeremy Lin, a Taiwanese player out of Harvard, has emerged to help the team win its last five games. A proficient scorer and passer with an understanding of angles, Lin steadies the Knicks' offensive attack. They are also playing better team defense.
It remains to be seen whether Lin will gel with Carmelo and Amar'e when they return, but analysts point out that putting more defensive pressure on Lin leaves his teammates open for easier shots.
Lin's story means even more to me as an Asian American who grew up loving team basketball.