Lin has lifted his profile over three breakout games, and on Wednesday he got some real lift, rising far beyond what many expected of his 6'3 frame to dunk on the Washington Wizards, who went on to lose to the Knicks 107-93.
The massive game Wednesday night, in which Jeremy Lin not only dunked, but also put up 23 points and 10 rebounds, made the new term #Linning explode on Twitter. An amalgamation of Charlie's Sheen's catchphrase winning and Lin's short last name, the word was all the buzz Wednesday:
Jeremy Lin is still tearing it up right now. #Linsanity #Linning, Twitter user @brandon2317 tweeted Thursday morning, summing up New York City's surprise at Lin's dominance, and also its pride in its newest star.
And New Jersey Twitter user @Mad_ee_o Jersey took it a step further, making up a few more Lin monikers of his own: Gonna have to go to a Knicks game soon and its not to see Amare or Melo #LINning #LINvincible #LINsanity #LINcredible, he tweeted Thursday.
And Lin appears to be loving all the love, and after he got his first start and dropped a stunning 28 points during the Knicks' 99-92 Feb. 4 win over the New Jersey Nets, Lin tweeted the following: God is good during our ups and our downs! Glad we got the win!!
The Knicks had been looking at a dire future, as Amare' Stoudamire is out for now after his brother died earlier this week in a car crash, and Carmelo Anthony is sidelined with an injury. But Lin stepped up to the plate over the last week, scoring more than 20 points in all three of his monster games.
Lin, a 200-pound point guard from Palo Alto, Calif., was a star since college, when led Harvard University to its all-time best basketball season in 2009 before graduating and going un-drafted in 2010. He proved himself in the NBA summer league, dominating John Wall in one particularly impressive game, and was then signed by the Golden State Warriors.
He played last year with the team, but during this season's NBA lockout, he ended up without a team. He went to the Houston Rockets for a short while, but was picked up by the Knicks in December.
As only the fourth Asian-American ever to play in the NBA, Lin, who has a charismatic personality to go with his tall black socks, has built a huge following, especially in the Asian-American community, and has gained more than 60,000 Twitter followers in the past week. Of Taiwanese descent, Lin drew the loudest cheers Wednesday night, and fans waved Taiwanese flags for their new idol.
He was able to get his first NBA slam off Wednesday night in the third quarter, when he drove past three defenders, then threw down a right-handed dunk:
New York coach Mike D'Antoni seems to be happy with his new star:
He just does everything easy and the rest of the guys around him are playing the way we want to play, D'Antoni told CBS, adding the following about Lin: The things that are real are his vision, which won't change; his speed, which won't change; his knowledge of the game, which won't change. I think it can only get better.
Watch highlights of Jeremy Lin's massive game Wednesday night against the Washington Wizards (including his first NBA dunk) in the video below: