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--- news (7/19/2012)
 
The Inevitable Return of Jeremy Lin

Getty Images

What Jeremy Lin will look like when the Knicks get around to reacquiring him. (Photo illustration)


July 18, 2030

The man stepping to the podium at the New New New Madison Square Garden was not the phenom who'd captivated this franchise so many years ago. Twenty NBA seasons—a longer career than any expert ever imagined for him—had taken a toll. His walk, slowed by knee surgery, was cautious, and his hair, though still asymmetrically hip, was now gray.

Jeremy Lin was 41 years old, and a New York Knick again.

Hello everyone, he said, smiling behind those familiar thick glasses, so trendy once. Remember me?

How many of us do? It seems like such ancient history, when a 23-year-old Lin entranced this city, a backup to the backup, summoned off the couch in his brother's apartment to become the starting point guard for an imperfect team. There was a magical fortnight, an incandescent win streak, and an epic 38-point outburst versus the Las Vegas Lakers, then of Los Angeles. In a half month he became the most popular athlete in the city, a global phenomenon with a buzzy nickname: Linsanity.

But it got weird, fast. Lin was injured, missed the playoffs. It was presumed he'd be back, but when the Houston Rockets presented a three-year $25 million offer, the Knicks grew irritated, comically stingy, and passed. Linsanity vaporized as another New York fad, like that summer everyone in Brooklyn decided to become a beekeeper.

What happened next is better forgotten. The Knicks sunk deeper into the muck. Over the next three seasons Carmelo Anthony (remember him?) averaged 39 points and .004 assists but the Knicks never cracked .500.

Amar'e Stoudemire lost another fight with Miami's fire extinguisher.

The Knicks signed the fire extinguisher. The point-guard rotation was so bleak the Knicks brought aboard a loopy Stephon Marbury, who insisted on playing each game barefoot, with a green parrot on his shoulder.

Then the inevitable happened. Isiah Thomas returned to the front office, then the bench, then finally, the court, at 54.

I feel like I'm the best option for this team, Isiah said. Where's Jim?

Owner James Dolan signed Thomas to a five-year, $120 million deal, then, bizarrely, attempted to trade him three hours into it, finding no takers, before trading Thomas back to himself, and signing him to a 10-year, $240 million deal. A parade of coaches rotated through the locker room: Mike Woodson, Mike Dunleavy, Mike Dunlap, Mike Bibby, Mike Francesa. It was known as Dolan's Mike Period. Larry Brown returned for six weeks, then quit for a once in a lifetime opportunity to coach a Belgian slow-pitch softball team. Dolan grew furious and hired ancient rocker Lou Reed to coach. Sticking to a strategy of sitting Carmelo, reading old copies of Interview magazine and taking a nap on the bench during the second half, Reed did shockingly well, the Knicks made the second round of the playoffs.

EuropeanPress Photo Agency

A vintage photo of New York Knicks guard Jeremy Lin from 2012.

But the details are just details. The end result was the same. There's been no title banner since the days of Clyde and Walt, almost 60 sorrowful years. Brooklyn, smug and annoying, has won four.

In Houston, Lin proved steady. He was not a Hall-of-Famer but he was consistent—17.5 points a game, nine assists, better than anything the Knicks ever got. The Rockets were lousy in the first year of the deal but they improved, reached the Western Conference finals by Lin's third season. Lin pushed on to Los Angeles, where he rejoined former Knicks coach Mike D'Antoni in a high-octane offense led by a veteran Kevin Durant, taking it all the way to a Finals Game 7 before losing 232-229.

He made a few All-Star teams. He earned a lot of money, became one of the most recognized athletes on the planet. But there was always the nagging melancholy of an opportunity lost, by leaving New York too soon. Given a choice between risk and stubborn, stubborn won.

Here was an effort to correct the past. Dolan, still in control, shook Lin's hand at the podium, but took no questions. The irony of Lin's new deal was not lost: four years, $50 million, twice what New York declined to pay in 2012. Lin will be 45 when it's through.

Lin said all the polite things. He offered a hearty hello to the new Knicks coach, Gwyneth Paltrow. He said he was thrilled to play with Knicks center Marcus Camby, active at 56, in the first year of a new 11-year deal, and praised the recent signing of journeyman Juwan Howard. He offered nice tributes to his former teammates. Lin still speaks to Steve Novak every day. Carmelo Anthony, he heard, was averaging 78 points and .008 assists in Luxembourg. Landry Fields started a venture capital fund in Palo Alto. Amar'e had become a firefighter. J.R. Smith was now a U.S. senator.

J.R. could be president, Lin said. Amazing. Just like President Tebow.

When the questions were over, a small scrum of fans circled the podium. An older gentleman reached into a white plastic bag and removed an article of clothing, covered by a thick layer of dust. It was a blue and orange T-shirt.

LINSANITY 17, it read on the back.

Where did you find this? Lin asked, inspecting the 50/50 tee.

The Duane Reade pharmacy, the man said. They still have a pile of them, in back. Twelve for $2.

Lin smiled and signed the shirt. He was back: older, richer, wearier, on the downside. What he was then, he was not now. He had finally become a true New York Knick.

A version of this article appeared July 19, 2012, on page D6 in the U.S. edition of The Wall Street Journal, with the headline: The Inevitable Return of Jeremy Lin.

 
     
Martin
1/26/2013 12:48:28 AM
I really couldn't ask for more from this aitrcle.
     
施砖辛格
7/19/2012 10:10:02 AM
2030年6月18日
这个站在新新新麦迪逊花园广场颁奖台上的男人,不再是当年那个引领一股风暴的明星。20个NBA赛季——比任何专家预测的都要长——积淀在他的职业生涯。他的步伐,因为膝伤而缓慢,而谨慎;他的头发,尽管仍然拥有不对称的时尚,已经略见银丝。
林书豪已经41岁,又成为了尼克斯的球员。
“大家好,”他在那熟悉的厚眼镜片后面微笑,潇洒地说:“还记得我吗?”

有多少人能够做到?这就像一个古老的故事,当一个23岁的林进入这个城市,作为一个替补的替补,从他兄弟的沙发上被召唤,成为一个未尽完美球队的首发控卫。曾有一个魔幻般的夜晚,一段闪耀的连胜纪录,和一个顶级的在湖人身上砍下38分的表现。在半个月间,他成为了这个城市最耀眼的明星,成为了一个轰动全球的热潮,以及一个优雅的名字:Linsanity

但是事情很快变得古怪,林受伤了,错过了季后赛。人们都推测他还会回来,但是当火箭队给了他3年25M的合同之后,尼克斯被激怒了,滑稽地小气了,并放弃了他。林书豪同其他的纽约风尚一样蒸发了,就好像当年布鲁克林每个人都想做个养蜂人。

接下来发生的事情大家还是忘掉吧。尼克斯身陷淤泥,在接下来的3个赛季中,甜瓜(还记得他吗?)场均39分0.4助攻,但是尼克斯从来未过50%胜率。

小厮在与迈阿密灭火器的战斗中再次失利。
尼克斯签约了灭火器。控卫轮换阵容前景黯淡,让尼克斯从国外借过来了那个无脑马布里,那个坚持赤脚打比赛,肩膀上带个鹦鹉的男人。

该来的总会来的。Isiah Tomas(前尼克斯教练,前活塞队控卫)又回来了,从前台,到了板凳,最终在他54岁那年,回到了场上。
“我觉得我是这个队伍最好的选择”他说“多兰在哪里?”

多兰给了Thomas五年120M的合同,然后,出人意料的,想要把他交易出去。在发现找不到下家之后,签给了他一个10年240M的合同。一个豪华队列的教练聚集在更衣室里:麦克武僧,麦克邓利维,麦克邓莱普,麦克毕比,以及麦克弗朗色撒。这就是传说中的多兰的麦克时代。拉里布朗回归了6个星期,然后为了一个“一生只有一次的机会”离开了,去执教一个比利时垒球队。多兰被激怒了,然后雇佣了一个经典摇滚乐手卢、里德来执教。里德贯彻执行让甜瓜坐板凳,在三四节打个盹,然后取得了惊人的成绩:尼克斯进入了季后赛第二轮。

但这些细节的改变还是远远不够的。最终结果依然没变。纽约经过了痛苦的60年,依然没有一个冠军,而同时期的布鲁克林,已经拿了4个。

花开两朵,各表一枝。同时期的林书豪在休斯顿稳步提升。他没有那么多的爆发,但是一直很稳定,场均17.5分9助攻。火箭在合同的第一年有些生涩,但是他们在进步。在林合同的第三年打到了西区决赛。在尼克斯前教练德安东尼和顶级投手杜兰特的加盟下,林书豪带领火箭扫平了湖人队,并打到了决赛第七场,然后232-229输给了他们。

林书豪进了几次全明星,赚了很多钱,成为了地球上最家喻户晓的体育明星。然而这些辉煌的背后总有一些遗憾,那就是,太早离开尼克斯了。让他选择机遇还是稳定,他宁愿选择稳定。

于是,出现了一个弥补过去错误的机会。多兰,他热情的握着林书豪的手,再也不肯丢掉这次机会。讽刺的是,这次他给林的合同是4年50M,他们在2012年拒绝掉的2倍。林书豪在合同结束后,将达到45岁。


林说了很多客套话。他跟纽约的教练帕特洛亲切地打了招呼。林说跟尼克斯中锋坎比的合作让他非常激动。56岁的坎比正在他11年合同的第一年。林同时称赞了新签约的球员朱万霍华德(姚明前队友)。林给他的前队友送上了一些礼物。林仍然每天都在和诺瓦克联系。而甜瓜,据说已经在卢森堡能拿下场均78分0.008助攻。菲尔兹在加州开始了风险投资,而小厮成为了一个灭火员。JR成为了一个参议员。

JR可以当总统,林说,太好了,就像Tebow总统一样。

当提问时间结束,一小堆粉丝围上了颁奖台。一个老先生拿上来一个白色的塑料袋,里面装着一件衣服,蒙上了厚厚的灰尘。那是一件蓝橘相间的T恤。
在它后面写着:Linsanity 17

“你在哪找到的?”林问,检查这件50/50尺寸的T恤。
“在一家药房,”这个人说:“他们还有很多,2美元12件。”
林微笑着在这件衣服上签字。林回来了:他老了,有钱了,疲倦了。他那时拥有的,现在已经失去。但是他最终成为了一名尼克斯球员。

翻译完了,不好意思我删掉好多插楼的。谢谢合作


 
 
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