Should Jeremy Lin Return To The New York Knicks Lineup Tomorrow?
The New York Knicks desperately need a point guard right now. During Game 4 of the Knicks first-round playoff series against the Miami Heat—a best-of-7 series in which they now trail 3-1—their starting point Baron Davis dislocated the patella in his knee and went onto the DL for the remainder of the season. Mike Bibby was forced into duty at the end of the game and actually hit a big three-pointer with just over a minute left. But, Davis’ injury left Knicks fans scratching their heads and wondering who will play point for the Knicks now in Game 5. And, the answer may have some of them feeling “Linsane” again.
Yes, you’re reading that right. Despite the fact that he’s spent the better part of the last two months sitting on the shelf, Jeremy Lin may be back in the lineup on Wednesday night when the Knicks travel to South Beach to try and extend their series with the Heat for one more game. Although he’s still recovering from a knee injury of his own, the thought is that Lin may have to play tomorrow night, whether he’s 100 percent healthy or not, simply because the Knicks don’t have anywhere else to turn.
“I really can’t answer that,” Knicks head coach Mike Woodson told reporters yesterday when asked about the possibility of Lin playing in Game 5. “We’ll get back to the gym tomorrow and talk to doctors and see where everybody, where they are physically. And, we’ll make some decisions before we get on the plane and head to Miami.”
The truth is that the Knicks might not have a very hard decision to make here. Without Lin, the Knicks will be left with Bibby and Toney Douglas at the point. Bibby’s best days are behind him and Douglas is not a true point, meaning he’ll likely struggle against the Heat. The Knicks could also benefit from the emotional lift that Lin would likely give them against the Heat. He didn’t particularly play well against the Heat this season. But, with all the rest he got while rehabbing, he would be able to provide the Knicks with a boost in Game 5. His conditioning could be a question. But, then again, Bibby and Douglas haven’t played much in the last month or so, either. So, it’s not like either one of them would have a huge advantage over Lin.
Ultimately, the Knicks shouldn’t sacrifice Lin’s future health for the sake of one game. But, if he’s good enough to go—or even close to good enough to go—the Knicks need to pull the trigger and unleash Linsanity once again. What do they have to lose? Without him, they might not stand much of a chance of winning anyway.