Everyone knew Jeremy Lin could play for Mike D’Antoni. Now he is showing he can play for Mike Woodson, too.
In his second straight dynamite outing, Lin got his nose bloodied in the first quarter, then bloodied the Raptors with an 18-point, 10-assist, three-turnover outing as the Knicks won 106-87 to move to 4-0 under their interim coach. It was Lin’s seventh double-double of the season.
“He is a point guard still in that learning mode,’’ Woodson said. “He is a good point guard. I think in time he’s going to be a really good point guard. All great point guards in the league learn how to get their teammates involved, defend and get involved themselves. That is the learning curve he is going through now.’’
The night began inauspiciously for Lin. Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan smacked him in the nose as he tried defending him at the perimeter. The game was stopped with 8:43 left to quell the flow of blood from Lin’s nose.
“It’s good,’’ Lin said. “I got hit, but I was good to go.’’
Lin got better as the game wore on, going 4-of-5 in the second half for 11 points. Despite an offense that is less spread for penetrations, Lin still is managing to score. He also finished plus-28.
In the fourth quarter, he hit a tough, falling-down jumper in the lane with the shot-clock expiring. He capped his night with a steal in the backcourt and fast-break dunk.
“I’m just trying to be aggressive,’’ Lin said. “I’m not sure how many shots I took. I was just trying to put pressure on the defense. ... Melo, Landry gave me some good passes when I was wide open. We’re just sharing the ball and trying to play fast. ... I’m not trying to prove anything. ’’
Jeremy Lin, Mike Woodson, Raptors, DeMar DeRozan