Unless you've been living under a rock for the past two weeks, or abstaining from TV since your travels abroad like Deron Williams, then you've heard and read about Jeremy Lin, and his rise from being thought of as a marketing gimmick to a bona-fide NBA player. Lin is averaging 27 points and 8.5 assists over his past six games. More importantly, the Knicks are on a six game winning streak with him at the helm. The most recent page in the book of Lin's legend was added when he dropped a three at the buzzer to defeat the Toronto Raptors on Valentines Day. Take a look:
What's crazy about this is everyone is acting like the Knicks were the first team to realize this guy could play. Flash back to 2010, the Warriors, and their new brass of owners, gave Lin his first NBA contract after his performance in summer league. As an undrafted rookie, they signed him to a two year contract. Talk about faith in talent. But, because of his limited opportunity in Golden State and newfound celebrity status in New York, the Warriors owners have taken a bit of a lashing from the fans for letting him get away. But in efforts to improve the roster, certain things happened, and I agree with the Warriors brain trust that no one in the organization should be blamed. Lin was cut loose soon after the lockout was lifted, in order to clear cap room for an offer to then free agent DeAndre Jordan. The offer sheet to DeAndre Jordan was ultimately matched, leaving the W's with no compensation for letting Lin go.
Lin was then picked up off the waiver wire by the Houston Rockets, I assume, in a ploy to appeal to the Asian population that had become long time fans due to Yao Ming's affiliation with the team. However, Lin didn't last long with the Rockets, as he was cut to make room to sign Sam Dalembert. Rockets GM Daryl Morey says that he regrets releasing Lin as well. Didn't know he would be this good.
So that makes two NBA stops, and both times he was released in hopes of signing a big man to the roster. There's a saying in the NBA that goes: "You don't trade Big for Little." Looks like the executives were holding true to their norms on this one.
Following the bouncing ball, moving down the waiver wire, Jeremy was then picked up by the New Knicks. The Knicks problems at point had been a point of concern, since the decision was made to amnesty Chauncey Billups is favor of signing Tyson Chandler. They had experimented with Toney Douglas and Iman Shumpert at the point, but neither possessed distributor qualities. The Knicks also experimented with Carmelo Anthony as a "Point Forward", but that failed as well. Baron Davis was thought to be the savior when signed in January, but his return date was uncertain. The Knicks needed an engine for D'Antoni's high powered offense, and were on the verge of waiving Lin, to sign another player, prior to giving him an opportunity to play. The linked article says that he was waived to sign J.R. Smith, or another veteran player; other articles name that veteran player as Mike James. Talk about being given an opportunity in the "Knick" of time.
The rest is Legend.