The electric atmosphere of Linsanity may feel like a distant memory now, but the folks at Time magazine haven't forgotten the impact of Jeremy Lin's emergence. In their estimation, the New York Knicks point guard is still one of the 100 most influential people in the world.
Not that he doesn't deserve it, but in my opinion, some of the picks for the 100 Most Influential are pretty suspect. Don't get me wrong, Jeremy Lin was a great story in the NBA this year but all the hype can do little to help him. In 25 games as a starter he has averaged 18.2 points and 7.7 assists. Great numbers for any NBA point guard rookie or not. But dissect that a little further and you'll see that most of that was in his first 12 games where he averaged 22 points and 9.2 assists. Over his last 13 games? 14.6 points and 6.4 assists. Still good numbers but more along the lines of Ty Lawson (16 points and 6.6 assists) versus Deron Williams (21 points and 8.8 assists). Ask yourself if he would be getting this much hype if he was just a middle of the road NBA player.
Teams are now game planning for him and he's essentially a rookie who has never had to play this many minutes over such a compressed period of time. His knee giving out is a clear sign of this. He needs time away from the hype to recuperate from surgery, build up his body to play the full rigors of an NBA season and improve his game. If his career mirrors his first 13 games, then there's no question he is worthy of the hype. Let's hope he gets there.