Few people can understand the type of media furor kicked up by Jason Collins’ arrival in the NBA, but Jeremy Lin might be able to take the best stab at it.
Lin is far less visible now than he was in February 2012, when he went from being an undrafted free agent to an international sensation with the New York Knicks in a phenomenon known as “Linsanity.” He offers a unique perspective, however, on breaking down a barrier that few people even acknowledged as existing.
“I think it’s definitely a big step,” Lin said Sunday, according to ESPN.com. “The game is evolving. You see a lot of different people breaking barriers in a lot of different ways. This is just another one of those.”
Collins held a pregame press conference Sunday to accommodate all the media interest, but Lin, the first Taiwanese-American player in the NBA, deals with a lot less hype nowadays. He’s a sixth man for the Houston Rockets, a fringe championship contender in the Western Conference, and no longer a media marvel. The hysteria turned out to be temporary, though it didn’t feel that way to Lin at the time.
“It was definitely not easy,” Lin told reporters. “For me, if I didn’t have that faith, in terms of my Christianity, I’m not sure how I would have been able to handle it or understand it or process it. For me, I try to think of it as living or stewarding God’s platform. That’s kind of how I approached it.”
Collins likely hopes he can look forward to a similarly unremarkable existence some day. Linsanity was forgotten. Collins-palooza, what there is of it, eventually should pass by as well.