Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Heating Up

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Heating Up

Article excerpt

NEW YORK -- While the Heat have been waiting and watching the Jeremy Lin saga, the Knicks provided a preview worth the hype.

It might not have been unreasonable for the Knicks to be looking ahead to tonight's meeting with the red-hot Heat in Miami. But instead, they put on display Wednesday the best example of just how good life with Lin could be.

The questions about chemistry and fitting Carmelo Anthony and Lin in the same lineup were answered with an end-to-end assault on the Hawks, as the Knicks raced out to a 27-point first-half lead and coasted to a 99-82 victory. Lin finished with 17 points and nine assists and Anthony scored 15 points.

So the Knicks didn't have to wait for the Heat to call, "Next."

"I think for us, we want to make sure what we're thinking about is [that] we want to build momentum going into the All-Star break," Lin said. "It's a big game. We're playing a great team and it will be a good evaluation of where we're at. From that end, we're excited and ready for the challenge."

There have been whispers out of Miami that Dwyane Wade and LeBron James are waiting on their shot at Lin, looking to shoot down the NBA story that has been hyped beyond their two-year run of hype. Speaking to reporters in Miami they had nothing but good things to say on the record, but the Knicks are aware that the Heat will be looking to prove something.

"He'll be a marked man," coach Mike D'Antoni said of Lin. "He should be. He's competitive. I mean, you know how Kobe [Bryant] plays it and ... LeBron and all these guys. They come in here and their eyes light up.

"You have to enjoy being a marked man. That means you did something."

Lin certainly has been competitive and more, as he has averaged 23.9 points and 9.2 assists over the past 11 games.

If the Heat are waiting for him, so were the Mavericks, who warned Tyson Chandler before Sunday's game that they had a plan to stop Lin -- and he posted 28 points and 14 assists that day. The Nets were waiting for him, too, and though Deron Williams got the better of him Monday in the rematch of the game that started Lin's run of success, Lin did finish with 21 points and nine assists. …

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