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"I think I've proven I'm a young player who has talent and yet has a long way to go," Lin told ESPNNewYork.com as he headed to see family and friends after Houston's 106-96 victory over the Nets. "That's the way I see myself. I've shown I can do some stuff. I've shown flashes of being a great player. But I've also shown the reverse as well, so it just takes some time."
In November, before his first meeting with the Knicks in Houston, Lin had told ESPNNewYork.com he believes he'll be an All-Star "at some point, for sure." He didn't repeat that claim after struggling against the Nets, who fielded not one, but two point guards who outplayed him, in Deron Williams and C.J. Watson.
But after finishing with nine points, six assists, and five turnovers two nights after he went for 29 points, eight assists, and six rebounds against Oklahoma City, Lin wasn't making any dramatic concessions, either.
"It might not be 29 points every night," he said, "but I just need to be more consistent.
"I think I've had to grow in terms of being a different player off the ball obviously, and learning to be effective every single night of an NBA game. Tonight I didn't really play my best game at all, but I learned a lot."
Lin's first trip to Brooklyn didn't match up to his last trip to the Garden, where he beat the Knicks in December with 22 points and nine assists. But he was cheered loudly on introduction and again when he made a few breathless passes that led to uncontested dunks.
Linsanity was born on the Nets' watch last year, when the undrafted, thrice-fired guard from Harvard came off Mike D'Antoni's bench and out of left field to play a big game at Williams' expense. Almost overnight, Lin became one of the world's most popular athletes, a truth that didn't stop the Knicks from refusing to match Houston's $25 million offer to the restricted free agent in July.
The Rockets made a deal for James Harden before the start of the season, and, suddenly, Lin -- who struggled early after offseason knee surgery -- wasn't the primary scoring option in their backcourt anymore. "It's a different system, and I'm in a different role," he said in comparing this season's Rockets to last season's Knicks. "I'm playing alongside a huge, elite playmaker in James Harden and learning to mesh with him. We're getting there, and I'm really happy with where we're at right now."
Source: ESPN | Ian O'Connor