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“Linsanity”

Breakout NBA star continues to impress

With a game-winning three over the Toronto Raptors, the Jeremy Lin story was taken to the next level. The Raptors are certainly no team to brag about beating, but Lin has now been too good for too long to be taken as anything other than the real deal.

While Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather spar on Twitter about whether or not there's a racist element to the lionizing that's going on, the rest of the pundits are salivating over the pure numbers. In five starts, Lin has five wins. The Knicks have gone from a laughingstock that would, perhaps, get better if Carmelo Anthony shot the ball less frequently to the team Anthony is having the give interviews about, saying he can co-exist with Lin when he comes back from injury. 

Lin has notched a double-double in two of the last five games and has scored 20 or more each time. When he torched the Lakers on Friday night for 38 points, people claimed he couldn't keep it up. He matched up with phenom Ricky Rubio in Minnesota just one night later, going for 20-8-6, and getting the all-important win. 

Even Stephen Colbert is singing his praises. So what to make of a player that comes from out of nowhere? (A career at Harvard doesn't exactly count, although he did set a school record.) Lin’s bounced around since graduating from college without being drafted into the NBA. His two-year contract with the Golden State Warriors was filled with rookie-type minutes and the dwindling box scores that accompany garbage time. After being waived at the beginning of this lockout-shortened season, he was claimed off waiver wires by the Houston Rockets, and was subsequently waived again before playing in a single regular-season game.

Since coming to the Knicks, though, Lin's story has changed dramatically. He began competing for a third- or fourth-string point guard spot, only to have his team suffer one of those uniquely good cases of bad luck. Injuries and setbacks conspired to spring Lin on the unsuspecting masses, and he's justified that leap of faith. 

Lin has already proved he's for real. Now the only question is: How long can he keep this up? The Knicks get to pick on the visiting Sacramento Kings tonight and New Orleans on Friday. On Sunday, though, the Knicks have a game on ABC pitting them against the defending-champion Dallas Mavericks. Lin's been impressive. Now the feat will be to see if he remains consistent.