Lucky the All-Star game's in Houston

Lin is vulnerable. Once the CAA decided that Lin wasn't part of "the family", he started getting ripped in the media at a level I'm not sure I recall before. CAA and the Knicks won the PR battle, somehow, against possibly the most inoffensive player in the NBA. The bare facts and logic surrounding NBA negotiations irrefutably support Lin's innocence, but a huge number of people think, for example, that Lin could have gone (and did go) back and make the Rockets offer him more money.

Melo and JR Smith are CAA clients. SAS is a CAA mouthpiece. Note the vitriol from those three during negotiations. JR Smith gleefully tweeted about "family" shortly before Lin was let go, and gleefully tweeted Howard Beck's breaking of the story the moment it came out, from his phone, while he laughed in the summer league stands with Knicks management.

Isaiah Thomas is close to all the CAA members, and still has Dolan's ear. He doesn't think Lin is very good. Thinking of Thomas, it reminded me of how he froze out Jordan at Jordan's first All-Star game.

Next year, Lin is going to the All-Star game most likely. I expect him to be good, but I don't expect him to be so good that his election is inarguable. It's quite possible he won't deserve it by the numbers. And if that happens, the media is going to feed the fire as much as it can, with CAA's encouragement. If the All-Star game happened in any other city, I could definitely see the other players, some of whom are represented by CAA, freezing him out. Also, if the controversy is stoked enough, I could even see the fans booing, if the All-Star game were held anywhere but Houston.

Luckily, that will be impossible in Houston. NBA players are cocky, but they are not cocksure enough to endure constant booing from the Houston fans. And once Lin makes it past his first All-Star game without being frozen out, he should be good for future ones. It would be somewhat silly to freeze him out later.

Incidentally, it would be pretty handy if Dwight Howard were there, so the starters had two Houston players. Then freezing him out would be even harder.

Although Lin's mental toughness is incredible, it's not invincible. There's no telling how a young player's confidence could be shaken by playing in an All-Star game that even he doesn't quite believe he belongs at, and being humiliated by the other players. His game might be permanently scarred.

Maybe I'm being dramatic. But I'm still glad of the luck. ;)

No cursing in title. No pirated material, such as links to online game streams. Do not cut/paste entire sections of content from other websites. Thanks.

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