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Galloway reminds Melo a little of 'Linsanity'

1/29/2015

NEW YORK –- In a short amount of time, Langston Galloway has made quite an impression for an undrafted rookie.

In fact, Galloway’s confidence and ability to step up in some big moments reminds Carmelo Anthony of another undrafted New York Knicks point guard who created a worldwide stir a few seasons ago.

When asked if he has seen another rookie as fearless as Galloway in taking big shots, Anthony mentioned the “L” word –- “Linsanity.”

“I don’t know man, I would say probably ‘Linsanity,’” Anthony said. “[Jeremy Lin] wasn’t a rookie but he was here and he had that mindset of taking the big shot when he first got here.

"I don’t like to compare anything, but Langston’s mindset of being willing to take that big shot, take the open shot, just having the opportunity out there, I think Langston loves those moments.”

Galloway may not become the overnight sensation that Lin became when he captivated many with a magical 35-game run with the Knicks in 2011-12. But during this dark and dismal season, Galloway has become a rare bright spot for the 9-37 Knicks.

The Knicks have played their best basketball of the season with help from Galloway, who scored 18 points and had four assists, four rebounds and three steals in a 100-92 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday night.

Galloway, who agreed to terms with the Knicks this week for the remainder of this season and the 2015-16 season, has played a pivotal role in helping the Knicks win four of their past five games.

During that five-game stretch, Galloway is averaging 15.2 points, 5.8 rebounds and 3.2 assists. Coach Derek Fisher has played Galloway an average of 33 minutes in those five games.

“He is not fearful of any moment,” Fisher said of Galloway. “When he is out there on the floor, he trusts himself. He plays with a confident toughness that has been really good for our group. And the guys enjoy having him around because of who he is as a young man, his character and how he’s built.

“And it is easy for teammates to want to be on the floor and support a guy like Langston,” Fisher continued. “Those are the type of guys we want to have around here as we build this thing out and that is why we got done what we got done yesterday [in signing him to a contract] and we are happy to have him.”

The St. Joe’s product has seemingly come out of nowhere. He played on the Knicks’ summer league team before being in their camp. He played earlier this season on the Knicks’ D-League team in Westchester before being signed to two 10-day contracts.

Fisher has credited hungry 10-day guys like Galloway, Lou Amundson and Lance Thomas with helping change the team’s mentality on the court.

While the Thunder played without Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook tried to carry Oklahoma City with 40 points, four assists and four rebounds. The Thunder point guard was a load for Galloway and the Knicks to handle, going to the line 12 times.

But Galloway banked in a big 20-footer with 4:41 remaining after Oklahoma City cut a nine-point deficit to two. Galloway’s basket started a 10-0 run that finished with him assisting Tim Hardaway Jr. on a 3-pointer with 2:35 to go to push the Knicks up 92-80.

“I’m just out there having fun,” Galloway said. “Just trying to play ball and learn from these experiences.”

Galloway has played in only nine games with the Knicks, so he still has a ways to go before “Langstanity” gets rolling. But so far, Galloway reminds at least one Knick of another previously little-known point guard with the ability to hit some big shots.

“Langston can play,” Anthony said. “I don’t think a lot of people know about him. But he can play basketball. Even going back to training camp, early in preseason, we knew he could play basketball.

“He’s great at getting in the paint, he can score the basketball,” Anthony added. “If he don’t have something, he’ll find the open man. That’s what he’s been doing.”