Miami Heat’s Defense Overwhelmed Jeremy Lin, Knicks

by February 24, 2012

Despite the buildup and excitment for Linsanity in Miami last night, it was the Heat who provided everyone with a harsh dose of reality. From the Herald: “The moral of this not-so-happy ending for the Knicks: Defense wins when it counts most. The pugnacious Pat Riley philosophy, embraced by Erik Spoelstra, proved much more effective than coach Mike D’Antoni’s drag-racing approach. AmericanAirlines Arena was temporarily turned into a basketball asylum as fans and glitterati came to see what all the craziness was about. Even Knicks groupie Spike Lee flew in to see if his team could continue its remarkable turnaround under Lin. […] ‘It’s hard to be Peter Pan every day,’ D’Antoni said. ‘They were geeked up for him. They come at you real quick and the first time the speed is overwhelming. We played arguably the best team in the NBA. We played well and then sputtered out. They set the bar for us.’ Heat guard Mario Chalmers said he and his teammates kept bumping up against Lin to make him uncomfortable. Wade said they tried to obscure his vision of the floor. ‘I can’t remember another team where it was so hard to take dribbles,’ said Lin, 23. ‘They were pushing me left. There’s a lot to learn. I’m far from where I want to be.’ Not long ago he was sleeping on a friend’s couch. Now he has a contract that pays him $9,295 per game and a Rising Stars Challenge spot during All-Star weekend in Orlando. Then he wants to go fishing and escape the attention that has transformed his life. ‘Hopefully I’ll be out on the ocean with no cellphone reception and the people I love,’ Lin said.”