Jeremy Lin responded to the news of four of his teammates being traded last Wednesday with an incredible performance—dropping 29 points, dishing eight assists and grabbing six rebounds in a come-from-behind win over the Oklahoma City Thunder—but has struggled to find a rhythm in the two games since.
It’s not surprising considering the Houston Rockets superstar was absolutely stunned by the moves, and told Dave Zangaro of CSN Houston that they were “pretty much the worst thing” and it was “really emotional” for him to deal with.
With former starting PF Patrick Patterson, backup guard Toney Douglas and reserve center Cole Aldrich now all with the Sacramento Kings, and second-string PF Marcus Morris flipped to the Phoenix Suns, it’s been a tough adjustment for the Taiwanese-American point guard.
In a win against the Brooklyn Nets this past Friday, Lin was only able to garner nine points on 4-of-11 shooting, while recording six assists, two rebounds and five turnovers.
He wasn’t any better in the team’s loss to the Washington Wizards on Saturday, scoring just five points and hitting on just 2-of-9 field-goal attempts. Lin only pulled down one board, but did dole out six assists.
Coach Kevin McHale has employed an interesting lineup in wake of the recent trades, adding SF Carlos Delfino into the starting five and slotting Chandler Parsons down to the 4.
Donatas Motiejunas is being counted on to get big minutes in the frontcourt, and Patrick Beverley seems to have replaced Douglas in the backcourt rotation. Things will likely change with Thomas Robinson and Francisco Garcia entering the fold and getting acclimated to their new teammates.
As one of the team’s primary facilitators along with Harden, Lin has to make the proper changes and learn to play up all these new players’ strengths, while adapting to the loss of familiar faces around him on the court.
Until he is able to do this, the Rockets will continue to struggle to get wins and stay in playoff contention.
Overall, Houston is in great shape after the trades and should be able to quickly find the rapport needed to not only win games, but also do so consistently and against any team in the league.
It was a net win for the franchise, but the short-term chemistry ramifications are causing a slight bump in the road for Lin and the Rockets.
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