Houston Rockets: A Look at Jeremy Lin's Competition in the Southwest Division

Vinny Hardy@http://twitter.com/VinnyHardyCorrespondent IAugust 22, 2012

Houston Rockets: A Look at Jeremy Lin's Competition in the Southwest Division

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    Football season is right around the corner, and that means only one thing.

    Basketball will be here in the blink of an eye, and training camps will open before we know it.

    Personally, I'm excited about both.

    Jeremy Lin is no doubt excited about the upcoming season as well. It's his first as a full-time starter with his own team to run. I've said he will average 15 points and eight assists this season, and I still believe that.

    Every NBA game is a challenge, and the challenge is heightened when the game is against a division rival.

    Let's look at the game within the game, and check out the floor generals that Lin will most likely do battle with in the Southwest Division on a nightly basis. 

Dallas Mavericks: Darren Collison

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    Like Lin, Darren Collison will be starting the season on a new team after leaving Indiana for Dallas.

    Collison is like a blur—his quickness makes him tough for defenders to stay in front of.

    He's averaged 12.1 points and 5.2 assists over the course of his young career.  

    At 6'0" and 160 pounds, Lin has three inches and 40 pounds on Collison. It's not hard to envision him using his size advantage to back him down a few times in each game like Mark Jackson used to.

    Advantage: Lin

New Orleans Hornets: Austin Rivers

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    It's not often that Lin will have a distinct experience advantage over an opponent's point guard.  

    This, however, will be one of those times.

    Austin Rivers obviously has the pedigree, but he was still learning the point guard position at Duke and will have even more to learn now that he's at the next level.  

    Brian Roberts may be in the mix, too. However, Lin will still have the edge.

    Advantage: Lin

Memphis Grizzlies: Mike Conley

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    Lin again has the physical edge in this matchup, but Conley is sneaky savvy. He's been solid for Memphis for his entire career and still hasn't fully reached his ceiling.

    Furthermore, this may be the year he does.  

    The Grizzlies will have a lot to prove after their heartbreaking playoff loss to the Los Angeles Clippers in a series that many thought they should have won.

    Advantage: Push

San Antonio Spurs: Tony Parker

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    At 30, Tony Parker is still the baddest man in the division, and one of the elite point guards in the league.

    He's coming off one of the best seasons of his career, averaging 18.3 points, 7.7 assists, 2.9 rebounds and one steal per game.

    The games with San Antonio will be highly anticipated, but Lin will definitely learn a lot from his battles with Parker.

    Advantage: Parker