When he joined the NBA G-League’s Santa Cruz Warriors, One of Jeremy Lin’s goals was to show big-league teams that he could remain healthy.
But Lin did not play in Wednesday’s SeaDubs game against the Canton Charge because of a back injury. The NBC Sports Bay Area broadcast described the scratch as “late”.
The extent of the injury isn’t known, but the broadcast gave no indication that it was a serious ailment.
Still, it’s bad news for Lin in his bid to return to the big leagues.
Lin’s long battle with injuries is credited for his exit from the NBA after the 2019 season, leading him to play in China last year.
Throughout his NBA career Lin has dealt with knee, back, hamstring, and ankle injuries. The injury history was so prodigious that Lin said it was why he couldn’t even land an NBA tryout this past fall, leading to him choosing the G-League.
“[I] talked to multiple teams, just trying to get a non-guaranteed camp invite just to show people who I am as a player, and I think there were questions bout my health and other things,” Lin said. “I’ve been healthy for two straight seasons, so I wanted to be able to ride that momentum and show people, but I wasn’t able to get a training camp invite…The G League bubble was the next step, the next chance to be able to show people.”
Lin has played well in the G-League bubble in Orlando — well enough to make teams in the NBA take notice. He’s averaging 17.8 points and 7.3 assists per game on 48 percent shooting from beyond the arc, making him one of the standout players in the bubble. But this back injury might undercut that good work.
Can NBA teams trust that Lin can be relied upon on a nightly basis?
The G-League has a tough schedule — 15 games in 25 days — so a rest day is understandable, but that’s not far off what the NBA is doing in their compressed (and consistency changing) regular season.
If Lin can get back on the court and return to his standout ways for Thursday’s game against the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, Wednesday’s day off might not be viewed as a demerit by interested NBA general managers.
But if this is something that lingers, Lin’s NBA dream might have to wait another year.
Contributed by local news sources