“Linsanity” has faded and some semblance of normalcy has returned to Madison Square in Times Square where the NY Knicks (18-23) are coming off a 5-game losing streak.
Yesterday, the division leading Philadelphia 76ers routed the NY Knickerbockers 106-94 at the Garden. But the chants of “Fire D’Antoni” began even before the final minute ticked off the clock. In a controversial move, the Knicks embattled coach Mike D’Antoni benched his superstars, Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire for the entire 4th quarter in favor of his 2nd unit led by his struggling starting point guard Jeremy Lin and the problem child J.R. Smith.
The baby faced Asian-American Harvard grad was hailed as the Knicks savior when he came off the bench to spark a 7-game winning streak back in February. But even as the gullible NY media went into a feeding frenzy of biblical proportions — cooler heads realized that Lin was simply a flash-in-the pan.
The media was looking for a ratings boost, and they hoped that non-sports fans wouldn’t notice that Lin and the rejuvenated Knicks were playing against mediocre sub .500 teams.
The only worthy opponent the Knicks faced during that 7-game win streak was the Los Angeles Lakers, who had an off night because their self-centered superstar Kobe Bryant is less concerned with winning and more concerned with chasing NBA records.
Lin is a good player, but his flaws were exposed by teams with real defenses, like the Miami Heat, who were acutely aware of Lin’s reputation for wildly dashing kamikaze-style into the teeth of defenses who shred him and strip him of the ball. Lin is currently averaging six turnovers per game — the highest in the league.
But despite all that, D’Antoni clings to his life-saver (Lin) like a delusional ship captain who refuses to believe his ship is sinking.
“I was reading some quote saying he’ll be a mediocre backup point guard,” D’Antoni said of Lin during the post-game press conference yesterday. “It’s probably the same guy who said two years ago he couldn’t play at all. Do we take that as gospel? No, he is going to have some growing pains. His heart, brain and athleticism are too good.”
“This is a team game, so you can’t put it on Jeremy’s shoulders,” said 2nd unit point guard Baron Davis.
As if D’Antoni didn’t have enough problems, his reserve point guard J.R. Smith was fined $25,000 by the NBA for tweeting a photo of a nude video butt model on his Twitter page.
Smith, whose ego is a lot larger than his IQ, tweeted the pic of the video model’s artificially-enhanced butt lounging in his hotel bed to taunt her former boyfriend, who is a no-name NY rapper.
Smith later deleted the tweetpic, but not before the NBA saw it and fined him.
They say boys will be boys, but boys eventually grow up. Smith is a fully grown idiot who is becoming a detriment to his team.