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NEW YORK – Jeremy Lin is still the New York Knicks’ starting point guard, despite the changes expected under interim coach Mike Woodson after the departure of coach Mike D’Antoni this week.
The New York Daily News and other media outlets reported Friday that Woodson had met with Lin and assured him he will remain in the starting lineup.
“He said that’s not going to change,” Lin told reporters at the team’s shoot-around on Friday morning, prior to a night game against Indiana.
“He told me not to worry about anything, just play my game.”
Lin has been the Knicks’ starter at point guard since February 4, when he came off the bench and led the Knicks to a victory over New Jersey.
Lin, a former bench-warmer who was waived by two teams before getting his chance with the Knicks, became an NBA sensation, his global reach increased by the fact that the California-born player’s parents are from Taiwan.
D’Antoni’s favored pick-and-roll offensive system was a perfect fit for Lin, who shone during the Knicks’ seven-game winning streak in February.
However, with stars Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire back in the lineup Lin was less productive and a six-game losing streak spelled the end for D’Antoni.
Although Woodson’s offensive system will be different, he said that doesn’t mean Lin’s starting job is in jeopardy.
“Jeremy is a big part of what we do. He’s our starting point guard,” Woodson said.
Anthony, too, said he didn’t expect D’Antoni’s departure to spell the end of “Linsanity,” the excitement that gripped Knicks fans during the team’s February surge.
“Lin is about winning. Lin is about this team,” Anthony said. “Lin is about doing things to help this team win. As far as the Linsanity thing goes, it’s still there. That’s not going nowhere.” – Agence France-Presse