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As has been reported to death the last couple of weeks by media around the city–the emergence of Jeremy Lin has led to a surging interest in the Knicks, especially among the Chinese.
Restaurants and bars in, or near, Chinatown have experienced a significant boost in business, and now, the Museum of Chinese in America has jumped on board with an event titled Beer and Basketball, which is part game viewing party, part panel discussion (featuring a slew of Chinese-American figures, ranging from college professors to media to Chinatown representatives), and part exhibition of all things Linsanity.
“We had been wanting to do something about [Lin] but didn’t want to just do something too serious, like a panel discussion,” Nancy Bulalacao, program consultant of the MOCA, told Runnin’ Scared. “Instead we decided to do something fun, like show a live game.”
The event is scheduled for March 12th at 7pm, the night the Knicks host the Chicago Bulls.
Bulalacao, an avid basketball fan, said she chose that specific date for two reasons: The date fits the museum schedule, and the Bulls are her second favorite team.
But is holding the viewing party–essentially a celebratory event to highlight Lin–on a night when they face the best defensive team in the league a wise move?
As much as the Knick’s recent resurgence have been fun for New Yorkers, serious hoopheads have pointed out that the wins have come against, mostly, mediocre teams. And when Lin and the Knicks met an elite defensive team, the Miami Heat, yesterday night, the results weren’t pretty–the Knicks looked completely outclassed, and Lin had a miserable game with 8 turnovers and missing all but one of his 11 shot attempts.
According to statistics provided by Hoopdata, the Bulls are an even better defensive team than the Heat, and Lin’s specific match-up, reigning league MVP Derrick Rose, has a history of dominating opposing star guards.
The Bulls are also the second best team at forcing turnovers, and Lin’s tendency to turn the ball over (he set a record for most turnovers in a 7 game stretch with 45 last week and he’s averaging 5.6 turnovers since his breakout game, which, at this pace, would lead the league by a fair margin) has been the most glaring flaw.
Bulalacao said she isn’t worried…right?
“I think Miami went out of their way to shut down Lin yesterday,” she said, adding the Knicks were on the road. “The game against Chicago should be a more evenly matched game…or at least I hope it will be.”
We hope so too, because if the Knicks don’t step up their game, the Bulls’ notoriously suffocating defense won’t just put a damper on the Knicks’ season, but the party at MOCA as well.