Linsanity by the Numbers


The Jeremy Lin phenomenon: ‘Linsanity’ by the numbers

After leading the Knicks to their seventh straight victory, the 23-year-old, Harvard-educated sensation’s name alone is worth $14 million — and counting

POSTED ON FEBRUARY 16, 2012, AT 12:15 PM

The Week

Consecutive games won by the Knicks since Lin came out of nowhere to lead the team

Points scored by Lin in his first five starts, the most by any player since the NBA and ABA merged in 1976

Lin’s points-per-game average for the first six games in the Knicks’ winning streak, an “eye-popping” figure, says Ian Begley at ESPN. Lin scored just 10 points during Wednesday’s win against the Kings, but “his 13 assists prove he can run the Knicks’ offense.”

Turnovers Lin committed in his first five NBA starts — also a record. This is only “a minor linterruption to Linsanity,” says Juliet Spies-Gans at The Harvard Crimson.

Top price for a ticket to Friday’s Knicks game against the New Orleans Hornets at Madison Square Garden, according to

Minimum price for a ticket to Friday’s game, according Before Lin’s streak began, a ticket “could be had for as low as $47 on Craigslist,” says Alison Bowen at Metro.

Surge in TV ratings, in percent, for Knicks games since “Linsanity” began

$50 million
Amount Lin is expected to boost the Knicks’ revenue by next season

$14 million
Value of Lin’s name as a brand, according to Forbes — a number that is climbing

Twitter followers Lin has on his @JLin7 account

Twitter followers he had on February 1

Twitter followers he picked up Tuesday night, following his last-second three-pointer against the Toronto Raptors, a tie-breaking shot that won the game for the Knicks

Followers Lin has picked up on Weibo, the Chinese version of Twitter

Consecutive days that Lin has appeared on the front or back cover (or both) of the New York Post, typically with a headline like “Lincredible!” or “May the best man Lin”

Percent increase in searches for the Knicks on Google in the last week. “About half of the increase has come from Taiwan,” says Roger Yu and Michael McCarthy at USA Today.

Percent increase in traffic to and from Feb. 5 to Feb. 12, the highest weekly increase ever

Search terms related to Jeremy Lin — “knicks,” “new york knicks,” and “lin” — in the Top 20 of Google Trends on Thursday morning. OnWednesday morning, those three search terms were all in the Top 10.

Cost of a Lin autograph on eBay. Before his surge in popularity, the typical price was $29.

Pieces of merchandise that sporting goods retailer Modell’s has ordered for its flagship store in Times Square with “Lin” or “Linsanity” written on them


Jeremy Lin Boosting Knicks Odds in Vegas

Courtesy of Bovada, here is how the Knicks fortunes are changing under Lin:

New York Knicks’ odds to win championship:  

Before Lin’s first game, 40-1

Today, 18-1

New York Knicks’ odds to win Eastern Conference:

Before Lin’s first game, 22-1

Today, 10-1

Odds to win the 2012 NBA Atlantic Division:     

Philadelphia 76ers, 2/5

Boston Celtics, 5/2

New York Knicks, 6/1

New Jersey Nets, 200/1

Toronto Raptors, 200/1

Will the Knicks make the 2012 playoffs?

Yes, 1/5

No, 3/1

New York Knicks’ season win total:

Over/Under, 36.5

Will Lin win NBA MVP? 

Yes, 40/1

Will Lin hit a game-winning buzzer beater shot from Feb. 15 on in the regular season?

Yes, 3/1

Linsanity-Related Things that Amuse Me

Funniest Tweets:

Kevin A. Koski @kevinkoski
If Jeremy Lin dunked on Lebron in a Yankees cap, and then celebrated by Tebowing in front of Brett Favre, would ESPN explode?

Mike Bresnahan @Mike_Bresnahan
Metta World Peace just stormed out of the Laker players’ lounge screaming, “Linsanity, Linsanity!”
(After Lin hit the game winning three vs. Raptors.)

The Bill Walton Trip @NotBillWalton
With Jeremy Lin the Knicks obviously have #Linsanity. With MettaWorld Peace, the Lakers unfortunately just have plain old insanity.

Coolest Tweet:

Steve Nash @SteveNash
Its crazy! I’m watching Linsanity hoping every shot goes in. Hope I never grow up.

Favorite Linsanity Music Parodies:

Jimmy Fallon does Pearl Jam tribute to Jermy Linsanity

Lin on Me

All I do is Lin Lin Lin

Jeremy Lin was Overlooked Because His Strengths are not Easily Measurable

There are lots of reasons why Lin has been overlooked for so long. Unconscious racial discrimination is part of it. But I actually don’t think that’s the main thing. Lin’s superstar strength is his decision-making and his courage when the game is on the line. This is not something that can be easily measured during scrimmage. I’ve read that he has a history of being terrible at practice. And this is actually quite understandable. Practice doesn’t count. There’s nothing on the line. And there’s really not much decision-making involved because the scenarios are all pre-planned. Also, when you’re the 5th guard on the team, as he so often was, you’re not going to be involved in many scrimmages. So I don’t think teams got to see what he can do and there was nothing to be impressed with. Also, before the game against Jersey, he only played during garbage time. Again, the stakes aren’t high. But also, with Lin, you need more than just a few minutes to really grasp how good he is, because everything that’s great about him takes time to see. Since his main strength is decision-making, you really need to see him in an entire game and in different scenarios to really appreciate what he can do. So I’m not at all surprised that he got cut and that it took utter desperation for Linsanity to happen. I don’t really blame the coaches and the scouts. That being said, he schooled John Wall during the NBA Summer league.

I don’t know how you can watch this game and not see his potential. I think that’s where the discrimination comes in. Not just racial discrimination, but also the fact that he came from Harvard, etc. I think people just thought it was a one-off thing that he shows up during these big situations (again, he steps up his game when it matters). But it was actually because of his showing in this summer league game that got the Warriors interested in him and that’s why they picked him up. So they did notice. It’s just that when they brought him in during practice or garbage time, he didn’t do anything that really stood out, because these moments don’t play to his strengtsh. So that’s how he slipped through the cracks.

Jeremy Lin’s Turnover Numbers are Representative of Top Point Guards

A lot of people are harping on Lin’s turnovers. I just want to put it in context and get some meaningful perspective on it. If you’re a passive Point Guard who mainly stands in the perimeter and passes around the perimeter, you’re not going to have very many turnovers. But if you’re a hyper aggressive Point Guard that’s attacking the paint on most possessions, you’re going to have a lot more turnovers. You combine this with the fact that Lin has only really been playing in the NBA for seven games and is already getting a lot of different defensive looks and double teams–I think his turnover numbers are reasonable. On top of all this, I just saw this stat that really puts his turnover numbers in context. When comparing Lin to the top Point Guards in the NBA, his numbers are actually very similar to theirs. I’m posting this because it really bothers me when people look at stats out of context. I mean, it REALLY bothers me. One of my pet peeves.

Jeremy Lin is More Courageous than a Jordan or a Kobe

Ice in his veins. The level of courage, bordering on cockiness, that Lin had to wait until literally the very last second to shoot that 3-pointer was more impressive than the courage that a Jordan or a Kobe has in those situations. I know I’m going to get a lot of flack for comparing him to Jordan/Kobe. But I’m not talking about his skills. I’m talking about his confidence/cockiness on the court.

I mean, Jordan/Kobe are expected to have the ball and make a play to win the game when time is running out. And if they don’t, it’s no big deal, because who else on their team is going to? Now here’s this kid who’s only really played six NBA games is cocky enough to wait until the very last second to launch an unnecessary three to win the game. No time outs needed–he’s that confident. He even signals his coach for an isolation and waves off the screen. His coach had planned to do a pick-and-roll, which would have made a lot of sense. They had plenty of time. But Jeremy was confident/cocky enough to wait until the very last second to launch the bomber. Why didn’t he shoot it earlier to allow time for a potential offensive rebound or tip in by his teammates? Why didn’t he do a pick and roll with STAT? If he hadn’t made that shot, these would have been valid criticisms.

To wait until the very last second to shoot the ball deep, knowing that your shooting percentage is your weakness. Knowing that this is one of the main criticisms that people have of you. And to do this in the midst of Linsanity, when you’ve got so much pressure to prove yourself. That’s just off the charts courageous, bordering on cockiness. Cockiness that someone who was nearly cut form the Knicks and–probably pro basketball altogether–should not have. This is why it’s more impressive than when you see a Jordan or a Kobe hit the winning shot. This is why I haven’t been this obsessed about/impressed by a public figure since Obama’s election. And before that, Bruce Lee. I guess I see a trend here. I admire people who are courageous and determined to go after something they want despite every single thing outside of them that tells them not to.

Hello world!

I’m not someone who is very interested in celebs or sports stars, etc. But I’m so drawn by Jeremy Lin, because it’s such a great story of passion and determination.  I haven’t been this obsessed about/impressed by a public figure since Obama’s election. And when I get obsessed about something, I want to know everything about it. So this is just a storage space for all the things that interest or amuse me about Jeremy Lin, as well as all of my musings on him.