NBA

Amar'e Stoudemire.

Amar'e Stoudemire comments on how 'Linsanity' really came to an end

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Prior to the Miami Heat's victorious trip to Madison Square Garden on Sunday night, former New York Knicks man, now Heat center, Amar'e Stoudemire spoke about the 'Linsanity' hysteria that swept through the NBA in 2011.

Jeremy Lin, who now plies his trade for the Michael Jordan-owned Charlotte Hornets, arrived on the scene in New York seemingly out of nowhere after initially struggling to establish himself in the NBA.

Lin was waived by the Golden State Warriors - who had claimed him after the Harvard graduate went undrafted in 2010 - and then the Houston Rockets prior to a sabbatical to play in China.

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Finally, after an injury to Iman Shumpert in late December of 2011, Lin made his way to New York.

What ensued was a period of 26 games where Lin converted a stuttering franchise back into playoff contenders, for the most part, without injured peers Carmelo Anthony and indeed, Stoudemire.

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The six-time All-star center has spoken glowingly about his former teammate but has suggested that not everybody was delighted with his sudden, yet meteoric rise.

"If he stayed it would've been cool. But everyone wasn't a fan of him being the new star," Stoudemire revealed.

"So, he didn't stay long. But Jeremy was a great, great guy. Great teammate. He put the work in and we're proud of him to have his moment. A lot of times you gotta enjoy someone's success. And that wasn't the case for us during that stretch."

Sacramento Kings v New York Knicks

33-year-old Stoudemire certainly intimated that not everyone was delighted to see the nimble point guard take the spotlight.

But make no mistake about it, Lin did grab the spotlight.

Lin became the first NBA player in history to score at least 20 points and have seven assists in each of his first five starts whilst his 45 turnovers in his first seven career starts were the most since the statistic began being tracked back in the late 70's.

He took risks that appealed to a Knicks fan base that was growing tired of the stale basketball that drove them to a record of 8-15 prior to Lin's promotion. The California-born guard registered career highs he hasn't been able to surpass since that stretch, including averages of 14.6 points, 6.2 assists, 3.1 rebounds, 1.6 steals and a shooting percentage of 44.6 from the field a night.

Toronto Raptors v New York Knicks

When Lin entered free agency the following summer, the Rockets seemingly made an offer that the Knicks couldn't afford to match to unleash their own bout of 'Linsanity'.

However, Stoudemire's comments do present an interesting thought: would the Knicks have matched the Rockets offer had Lin been more popular figure inside the organisation?

Either way, Lin now complements the explosive Kemba Walker in the Charlotte backcourt, but at just 27-years-old, you never know when 'Linsanity' might just strike again.

Topics:
Eastern Conference
NBA
Jeremy Lin
Charlotte Hornets
Southeast Division
Miami Heat
New York Knicks
Atlantic Division
Carmelo Anthony
Amar'e Stoudemire

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