Print and Go Back ESPN.com: New York Knicks [Print without images]

Thursday, November 22, 2012
Lin: Melo partnership would've worked

By Ian Begley

Jeremy Lin
Jeremy Lin believes, given time, he and Carmelo Anthony would have been a success in New York.

HOUSTON -- Jeremy Lin's in Houston now.

But if he was still in New York, Lin thinks that, eventually, he and Carmelo Anthony would have been successful together.

"I think, yeah, throughout time," Lin said on Thursday. "You've got to think about stuff in terms of perspective and I think there's a lot of teams out there -- Miami or other teams in the past -- that have gone on to win championships that didn't look pretty in their first 10 games and they definitely didn't look pretty in their first season together. It's tough to say, but [Anthony] really wanted to make it work I felt. He was trying to do everything to find a balance to both [players'] different styles."

Anthony and Lin certainly struggled to find that balance in New York.

The Knicks were 8-9 with both players healthy and in the starting lineup.

Anthony's isolation-centric game didn't mix well with Lin, who thrived in former coach Mike D'Antoni's up-tempo attack.

"We tried to make it work," Lin said. "We just didn't have enough time."

The Knicks, of course, don't have to worry about how Lin and Anthony fit together anymore.

Raymond Felton
Jeremy Lin says new Knicks point guard Raymond Felton is a great fit for the team.
Lin is in Houston this season after the Knicks' declined to match the Rockets' three-year, $25.1 million offer sheet to Lin over the summer.

He will face the Knicks for the first time as a Rocket on Friday.

Lin said after the Rockets' shootaround on Thursday that, despite his early-season struggles, he's happy to be in Houston.

"It didn't shake out the way everybody thought it would, but I'm still very at peace with it, the way everything happened," Lin said. "I think I'm in a great situation right now."

Lin is averaging 10 points, 6.3 assists and 2.8 turnovers in 33 minutes for the 5-7 Rockets. He's shooting just 33 percent from the field, including an unsightly 22.9 percent from beyond the arc.

Raymond Felton, whom the Knicks acquired in a trade over the summer shortly before deciding not to match Houston's "poison pill" offer sheet, has thrived for the 8-2 Knicks.

He's averaging 15.7 points, 6.9 assists and 2.7 rebounds per game. Felton's also shooting 42 percent from beyond the arc.

"I think he is a great fit for them," Lin said of Felton. "I think he's really good. I think he came back really motivated this year and he's playing really well. He deserves a lot of that credit."

Lin has said in the past that he expected to remain in New York before the Rockets changed things in their favor.

"I enjoyed playing for the [Knicks'] fans, that was the biggest thing," he said Thursday. "But I have a lot of peace about it right when it happened because I know God has the perfect plan."

The 24-year-old Harvard grad says he has no extra motivation heading into Friday's game against the Knicks.

"I have enough motivation already to try to get out of the little slump that I’m in," said Lin, whose averaging seven points, six assists and three turnovers on 27.5 percent shooting in his past five games. "Just got to keep playing and get through this tough stretch."

Lin remains in touch with several players on the Knicks' roster and, while he hasn't seen any Knicks games, he knows New York is off to a hot start.

"I think they've found what works for them, for sure," he said.

Lin on Amar'e: One of the major issues surrounding the team is the role Amar'e Stoudemire will play once he completes his rehab from knee surgery and returns to the court.

Stoudemire and Anthony have struggled to develop chemistry in their season and a half together in New York, so some believe Stoudemire would be more effective coming off the bench instead of sharing the floor with Anthony.

Lin, though, thinks the two stars can make it work.

"I honestly think it can work because they're so talented," he said. "I think it's also their approach to the game. I think they're both really ready to buy in and do whatever it takes and throw all that other stuff out the window, so you've just got to give them time."