Jeremy Lin is still searching for his rhythm, speed

By @saihoops on
Jeremy Lin
Dec 12, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Jeremy Lin (7) dribbles the ball as Houston Rockets guard Eric Gordon (10) defends during the third quarter at Toyota Center. USA TODAY Sports / Troy Taormina

Jeremy Lin had 10 points and 7 assists in his first game back from injury Monday evening during Brooklyn Nets' 122-118 defeat to the Houston Rockets at the Toyota Center.

Lin, playing his first game since Nov. 2, was eased into the rotation by coach Kenny Atkinson. The point guard appeared in 20 minutes off the bench and made 4/8 field goals and 1/3 shots from deep.

After the game, coach Atkinson said he didn't want Lin "to try too many things" and it was evident from the way the guard approached his limited minutes. Lin wasn't trying to blow past defenders or play at his typical pace, which explains why he had only one turnover and wasn't his usual self in transition offense.

In Lin's absence, rookie Isaiah Whitehead fared decently even though the Nets lost 13 of the 17 games without their floor general. Atkinson wanted Lin to try and fit into the existent offense instead of trying to impact the game too much.

“I was really thrilled (at Lin's comeback). You usually expect a guy to be a little rusty, but I didn’t see that at all. He had great energy and played with good poise. I was just happy he didn’t try to do too much.

“Sometimes, you come back and you’re anxious to do too much, especially as ambitious as he is. It was good he did it within the team concept," said Atkinson, via NewsDay.

Jeremy Lin: 'My speed isn't there yet'

Lin, who missed nearly two months of action with a left hamstring injury, acknowledged that he's still working towards regaining his speed and rhythm. “My burst of speed getting by guys isn’t completely there yet. So you adjust and figure it out. A lot of times, it’s getting passes out quicker or reading angles. I think that will come back soon.”

The Asian-American guard, known for his speed and flashy passes, realises that he needs to let the game come to him. “I’m just trying not to be flashy or take over the game. I’m trying to play naturally. If I’m hot one night or if they’re giving me a certain thing, it’ll happen, but I don’t need to go and seek it.”

After signing Jeremy Lin to a three-year, US$38 million (AU$51 million) deal in the summer, the Brooklyn Nets began the new season with a 2-3 record before the point guard went down with injury. The Nets are now 6-17 and at the bottom of the eastern conference for a second consecutive season. 

Jeremy Lin and the Nets will host the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday.