‘Linsanity’ came up short in South Beach as Miami Heat defeated New York Knicks 102-88 on Thursday at AmericanAirlines Arena to record an eighth straight success.
Most of the pre-match was dominated by the meteoric rise to fame of Jeremy Lin but not even pep talk from film director Spike Lee could prevent opposite number Chris Bosh from stealing the show.
The Heat forward led four players in double-figures with 25 points and eight rebounds – Dwyane Wade had 22, while LeBron James added 20 points, nine rebounds and eight assists.
Rookie guard Norris Cole had 10 points off the bench but his work in defence, along with team-mate Mario Chambers, restricted Knicks guard Lin to eight points on one of 11 shooting while he also had a game-high eight turnovers.
The third quarter saw the Heat go clear, winning 29-19, while the Knicks were led by Carmelo Anthony’s 19 points but he shot just seven of 20 from the field.
Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said there was no special plan in place for Lin but was delighted with how the likes of Cole and Chambers had put the shackles on the Los Angeles-born Asian superstar.
“It’s not a specific plan,” said Spoelstra. “What we wanted to do was treat him with the adequate respect he deserves.”
Knicks coach Mike D’Antoni added: “He didn’t have the legs. He played last night. It happens. It was a learning experience…we probably just played maybe arguably the best team in the NBA.”
Lin will look to respond when the Knicks return to action on February 29 v Cleveland Cavaliers, March 4 @ Boston Celtics and then a double-header @ Dallas Mavericks on March 6 and @ San Antonio Spurs the following night – those looking to bet on basketball will be following Linsanity’s form in the next few games.