"Players playing that well don't usually come out of nowhere. It seems like they come out of nowhere, but if you can go back and take a look, his skill level was probably there from the beginning. It probably just went unnoticed."
Kobe Bryant said this after playing against the New York Knicks in a game where Jeremy Lin scored a career-high 38 points.
The clock struck midnight and the fairy godmother, the New York Knicks, did not swing their magic wand. They let the train that carried Linsanity turn into a pumpkin and with the end of the fairytale came the shocking statement that would not have been said before the off season.
Jeremy Lin is officially an ex-Knick. It is the end of Linsanity as we know it, but the continuation of the insanity.
Let me explain something.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion about Jeremy Lin and whether or not you love him or hate him, you still are watching him.
You can be his biggest fan or his biggest hater, bottom line is you would tune just to watch him perform and see if he indeed was either hype or the real deal.
The off season arrives and the expectation was Jeremy Lin was to return to the Knicks.
The Knicks pursued Steve Nash, but Jeremy Lin is still expected to return.
The Knicks re-signed Steve Novak and J. R. Smith, but no offer to Jeremy Lin because he is expected to return.
The Knicks sign Jason Kidd to work with Jeremy Lin, but no offer to Jeremy Lin.
Do you see the trend here?
The Knicks put all their eggs in the Steve Nash basket and signed other players without offering Jeremy Lin a cent.
So what did Lin do? Do what any player who is being ignored do, better yet, what anyone would do without a guaranteed job. Lin looked for a job and he found one with the Houston Rockets.
Before the Rockets, the Brooklyn Nets, Dallas Mavericks, and Toronto Raptors all expressed interest in the 23-year-old.
The Knicks did not. The norm was that it was expected he would return and if he signed an offer sheet, the Knicks would match it.
Ok, he signed an offer sheet, your move Knicks.
Crickets chirp as the clock ticks.
The Knicks do not match the offer because of the fear of the luxury tax in the third year and because they felt they were deceived for Lin working on a contract behind their backs.
After you, the Knicks organization, court everyone else and Lin follows suit, you decide to give him the cold shoulder? Absurd.
If you want something that is insane, look no further than James Dolan and the New York Knicks.
Signing 35-year-old and over free agents and not paying attention to Lin was the ultimate demise for Linsanity with Dolan being the executioner. Dolan allowed his number one long term cash horse to be claimed by the Rockets and did not do what was expected. He allowed personal issues to be involved with business. If you are a businessman, you do what is good for business. Lin brought a fan base, media, ticket sales, cable contracts, sponsors. and most importantly revenue to Madison Square Garden and the Knicks organization. Just imagine if the Knicks matched the offer and Lin played the same basketball we witnessed in his 25 starts for a year or two.
Couldn't Lin be used in a trade for Chris Paul?
But that can't happen anymore and if you look at the Knicks roster, what depth, long term, do they possess now?
Dolan let his ego get the best of him and now it will cost him big time. Dolan has allowed Lin, the man who he wanted long term and gave him his word that he wanted Lin in New York just walk out the door with not even an autograph as compensation. No first-round pick, no shooting guard, no nothing. You are passive in your negotiations with Lin and decide to shun all he has done and go against your word. You got what you deserve.
With all that said, you can say the Knicks have even higher expectations now without Lin.
For starters, all eyes are on Carmelo Anthony, yes the same man who said Lin's contract was "ridiculous." Carmelo is on the hot seat and everything done this season will be connected to Anthony. If the Knicks do not win, it will be Anthony's fault. So Anthony, you have what you wanted.
This is your team, now go win a championship. Linsanity is dead. No more complaining over coaches, contracts, getting the ball, you have everything you need to possess in order to win a championship. You can show you can talk the talk, but talk won't get a championship. Be the leader of this team and prove you don't need Jeremy Lin.
The Knicks are still a good team and could be a 5th seed and contend for the division title with the Boston Celtics. But those observations are just that, observations. History shows with the New York Knicks, nothing is guaranteed and that has been apparent through this off season.
Dolan better hope letting Lin go was the right thing to do because while the fans may be attacking Anthony, you can best be sure Dolan will be guilty by association.
So ends Linsanity in New York and so begins life after Jeremy Lin and the Knicks will move on. Let's hope they move in the right direction.