Jeremy Lin Learning Valuable Lesson from Kobe Bryant About NBA Survival

Jeremy Lin has had both good and not-so-good games during his first month with the Los Angeles Lakers. And, with encouragement and tough love from Kobe Bryant, the 26-year-old point guard is learning about survival in the NBA.

He is also learning how to frame his own quiet opinion alongside Bryant’s bombast.

Baxter Holmes of ESPN LA recently wrote about a loss to the Denver Nuggets—one that featured a hail of missed shots by Bryant during crunch time. Lin’s summation of the misfires showed respect while also positing a possible remedy.

"He's a tough shot-taker and a tough shot-maker and he's a superstar and sometimes you've got to give him that freedom to go and be who he is and do what he does—and sometimes you've got to find a way to keep the flow and stuff," Lin said.

And then there are those times when it’s simply better to dump the ball off and let a legend go to work.

On Sunday night, the Lakers got just their fourth win in 17 tries, beating the Toronto Raptors in overtime, 129-122. Lin had trouble finding the bottom of the basket, shooting 3-of-11 from the field.

But Bryant went off for a triple-double with 31 points, 12 assists and 11 boards and became the first player in NBA history with 30,000 points and 6,000 assists.

For Laker fans, it was a rare bright moment during an abysmal season. For Lin, it was an invitation to a basketball clinic. Bryant’s brilliance was on full display—post-up moves, ripped down rebounds, pump-fakery, scissor-kicking jumpers and a sick crossover on Terrence Ross.

To Lin’s credit, he did more than observe, with three boards, three dimes and a couple timely steals. He was also waiting in the corner when Bryant fired him a pinpoint pass—Lin sailed it up and it rattled out… and then back in again.

The California-born Asian-American’s story is ...

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