Rockets launch Jeremy Lin era; Knicks look to move forward


Everyone wants a piece of Jeremy Lin. (Pat Sullivan/ AP)

The Houston Rockets opened training camp on Monday with a bit more excitement than usual, largely thanks to their biggest offseason acquisition.

Jeremy Lin’s arrival coincides with a youth movement in H-Town, where the Rockets enter the season with only three players on their roster who have been in the league for more than three seasons. Houston has five rookies, including first-round picks Terrence Jones (Kentucky) and Jeremy Lamb (Connecticut), four second-year players, and four players entering their third season, including Lin.

“It kind of reminds me of college,” Lin said Monday (via the Associated Press). “Just coming in, trying to lead, trying to work hard, trying to build a culture of playing a blue-collar brand of basketball.”

The always-modest point guard attempted to temper expectations during media day by explaining that he’s still “very young in terms of learning.”

“Every day I make a lot of mistakes in practice,” Lin said. “As I continue to cut down on those and hopefully grow my game, I’ll be able to evolve as a player.”

The Rockets are eager to witness that evolution – as evidenced by the massive contract they gave a relatively unproven player – and hope their fan-base is equally excited.

If there was any doubt who the team plans to market as its biggest star, a quick visit to the team’s Web site (or the Houston Chronicle Web site, or just about any other major web publication in the greater Houston area) clears that up.

Meantime, in Gotham….

The Knicks are going with a more measured ticket sales campaign focused around Carmelo Anthony, Amar’e Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler.

Point guard Raymond Felton – who is reportedly in shape, in case anyone was wondering –  did not make the splash page cut.

The biggest question at Knicks media day had nothing to do with the current roster and everything to do with the guy in Houston.

The decision not to match Houston’s offer “came down to the fact that Houston made a commitment to him that we weren’t prepared to make,” Knicks general manager Glen Grunwald said (via the New York Times).

Follow us: @MattBrooksWP | @CindyBoren

More

Lin taking leadership role with young Rockets

Knicks want focus on current team, not Lin

Lin Skypes with sad 5-year-old Knicks fan (video)

Lin: “Honestly, I preferred New York”

Knicks let Lin walk; Could they be better without him?

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Cindy Boren · October 2, 2012