2014 NBA Playoffs: Houston Rockets’ Jeremy Lin Snatches Defeat From Jaws Of Victory In Game 4

Jeremy Lin Houston Rockets

Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

With 34 seconds left in Game 4 of the Houston Rockets‘ first-round series against the Portland Trail Blazers, it seemed as though Houston had finally caught a break. Nicolas Batum had just missed an open three from the wing and Jeremy Lin grabbed the rebound.

With two timeouts and nursing a two-point lead, there was no reason for the Rockets’ backup point guard to do anything but relax with the ball. Instead, Lin tried racing the ball up the sideline and Mo Williams made a fantastic play to knock the ball away and keep it inbounds. After a missed shot in the lane, Portland grabbed an offensive board, swung the ball around the arc, and found Williams wide open for a go-ahead three.

Before that play, Kevin McHale hadn’t gone to Lin in crunch time. Instead, he went to the hot-shooting Troy Daniels, who was important as a floor stretcher for Houston’s offense. After Lin’s blunder, McHale went back to Daniels, who continued his hot play in overtime. Daniels finished with 17 points on 4-of-5 shooting from three-point range, while Lin scored four points on 1-of-6 shooting with three turnovers.

The way the series has gone so far, Houston likely would have found a way to lose regardless, but Lin’s play was absolutely inexcusable. In Game 3, Lin made a similar mistake with Houston leading by three and about 40 seconds remaining. Instead of pulling the ball out and draining the clock, Lin took the ball to the basket and missed a layup.

To be fair, if Lin would have made the shot, it would have made his gutsy move pay off, helping Houston ice the game, but that wasn’t the case. Going into Game 5, McHale should continue to give Lin’s crunch-time minutes to Daniels, regardless of offense-defense matchups. The Rockets will face elimination on their home floor on Wednesday night.

Mike De Moor is an NBA writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @MikeDeMoor, “like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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  • Will
    • jcsantos

      Picture of Lin getting hounded also showed he was clearly fouled after getting the rebound.

  • jcsantos

    Less Lin minutes = less assists, no ball movement: Game 4 OT is a testament to that. Daniels is USELESS if he’s only going to watch Howard or Harden do their isos while the ONLY guy who would pass to him outside of drawn plays is sitting on the bench.

  • Ric V. Avelino

    This writer is against Lin focusing on Jeremy’s mistakes. By the way, Lin was in no position to call a Time Out then because of the fast motion or else he would have been called a travelling. The best person to call a timeout should have been the coach or anybody from the superstars very relax watching. It was only Parsons and Beverley who were moving then while Howard and Harden who were the nearest and the Rockets who could have helped did not give any hand nor shouting different from Chandler. Only the fans seemingly are aware of Harden’s mistakes which are numerous. Is basketball supposed to be a team effort? How about Lombardi’s “If a team wins it is because of the good players but if they lose it is because of a poor coach?

  • Tomi Wing Yip Choi

    LOOK ITS MIKE THE FAIL WRITER AGAIN OMG, THE ACCIDENTS OF QUICKLY PUSHING LINKS!!!!

  • Yossi Wibowo

    Mickey De moore, u mouse, smelly as crap and dont talk about Lin anymore!