Both came out of the clash in severe pain.
Sanders grabbed at his head and eventually made his way to the bench. Lin grabbed at his head and made his way to the locker room.
The reason why was simple: Lin had one side of his head covered in blood.
Both were attempting to come up with a loose ball. Their tenacity led to pain, however, as the 6'11", 235-pound Sanders collided with the 6'3", 200-pound Lin. You can see why Sanders won that battle.
ClutchFans.net instantly released a still frame of Lin's injury. If you have a weak stomach, I advise against viewing the following tweet:
That's a lot of blood on Jeremy Lin's head after his 3rd quarter collision with Larry Sanders. twitter.com/clutchfans/sta…— ClutchFans.net (@clutchfans) January 5, 2013
Painful isn't an accurate enough adjective.
Fortunately for Houston, Lin proved that he's one of the great warriors in the NBA. With five stitches in the side of his head, he came back to play in the fourth quarter.
.@jlin7 has returned to the game for the start of the 4th. Tough as nails.— Houston Rockets (@HoustonRockets) January 5, 2013
Lin picked up four points and four assists in the final period of play.
The Rockets now move to 19-14 overall and 13-2 against Eastern Conference foes. Unfortunately, they play in the West.
Even still, this was an impressive comeback and an inspiring return to game action. Could this be the start of something special in Houston?