As the Brooklyn Nets continue their West Coast swing, combo guard Jeremy Lin remains sidelined with a hamstring strain. The Nets face Lin's former team, the Los Angeles Lakers, on Tuesday night at Staples Center after getting thumped by the Los Angeles Clippers, 127-95, in the same building on Monday with a makeshift backcourt.
Lin, who suffered the injury after logging 16 minutes during Nov. 2’s 109-101 home victory over Detroit, is reportedly expected to be re-evaluated sometime this week before returning to the court, the Associated Press reported Saturday.
That report follows the Nets announced timeline for Lin’s recovery, which was originally set to be two weeks, and unless there are any setbacks he could return later this week or early next week when the 4-6 squad returns home from its five-game road trip.
However, the injury has kept Lin out of Brooklyn’s last five games, a stretch that included matchups with his former teams like the Charlotte Hornets, the New York Knicks, and now the Lakers. The Nets have gone 2-3 in Lin’s absence.
Five games into his return to New York City, Lin has put on some impressive scoring and playmaking displays while also serving as a veteran leader. The 28-year-old fired off 21 points and nine assists in a 103-94 victory over Indiana on Oct. 28, and followed up the next night with 12 points and 11 assists for his first double-double of the season, though Brooklyn fell to the Milwaukee Bucks, 110-108.
Lin is currently third on the team in scoring with 15.0 points per game, while averaging 6.2 assists and 2.8 rebounds and shooting 44.8 percent from the floor.
Unfortunately for Lin, he’s missed out on possibly one-upping his former teams. Both the Hornets and the Knicks beat Brooklyn with Lin watching from the bench, and he’s likely to do the same against the Lakers. Lin spent one season in Los Angeles, which was mired in a constantly evolving rebuilding process and Lin struggled to adapt to the styles of then-head coach Byron Scott and now-retired superstar Kobe Bryant. Lin would average 11.2 points - his lowest total since his rookie season - and 4.6 assists but his defensive woes led to him riding the bench for much of the season
Lin’s potential return could further stabilize a backcourt that’s played well. Nets first-year head coach Kenny Atkinson initially slotted Brooklyn native and rookie point guard Isaiah Whitehead in Lin’s spot in the starting lineup, but he went down with a concussion last week against Minnesota and has sat out the last three games.
Atkinson then turned to third-year guard Sean Kilpatrick to play beside shooting guard Bojan Bogdanovic, with Randy Foye and developmental league call-up Yogi Ferrell coming off the bench. Kilpatrick was especially strong in Saturday’s 122-104 victory at Phoenix, clocking 19 points, nine rebounds, and four assists over 32 minutes, but he has committed nine turnovers in the last two contests.