Jeremy Lin Competing for Starting PositionBy: Emily Greene - October 23, 2013
Preseason NBA games have been underway for a few weeks now, giving fans a chance to see new players in action, be they rookies or a trade from another team. Preseason games are also a time for coaches and teams alike to figure out who will be starting in certain positions. The Houston Rockets are currently trying to figure out who will be their starting point guard: Jeremy Lin or Patrick Beverley.
So far, both guys have started in two games each of the preseason, but Rockets coach Kevin McHale has yet to make a decision who will start once the regular season starts. There is also the option that both Lin and Beverley could spend time together on the court.
Both Lin and Beverley saw some minutes in the most recent preseason game against the Dallas Mavericks. Lin started and played 33 minutes, and then Beverley came off the bench and played 26 minutes.
Coach McHale was pleased with the performance from both players. Said McHale, “I thought (Lin) did a lot of nice things. He broke people down; he had eight assists. Between he and (Beverley), they had 13 assists and four turnovers. I liked when they were both in the game.” Added McHale about what Lin and Beverley brought to the defense, “I thought they were both really solid. Any mistakes that they do make are mistakes because they’re trying really hard and getting after it. They stay in place. They use their hands. They’re both diligent guys.”
Both guys playing so well may make it hard to choose who will be the starter, but choosing a starter doesn’t seem to be something McHale finds as important as others might. Said McHale of starting, “As a player, I always found it irrelevant. I came off the bench in a lot of games. What is the big difference in playing 27½ minutes off the bench and playing 26 minutes as a starter? I guess it is a big deal to some people.”
According to Lin, both he and Beverley have different strengths that can help out the team at different times. “We have different strengths.[Beverley] is such a good defender and shooter. I am better with the ball in my hands, attacking. I think that makes us tough to scout, and it gives us the opportunity to give a lot of different looks,” said Lin. And Beverley seems to agree with him, saying he isn’t as an offensive threat as Lin.
One veteran NBA writer believes Lin would be the better choice for starting point guard, at least according to the numbers. Do you agree?