Basketball’s Three Point Foolish Failure Attitude Towards Jeremy Lin

Foolish Failure
Failing to see opportunities for serendipitous success
in people who are different from you
because you do not understand that
your success is connected to their success

First Point Foolish Failure Attitude

Scouting methodology that focuses on:

Watching videotape to see who “runs really fast, jumps really high, does the quick, easy thing to evaluate”

Predraft workouts to watch for skill work, shooting, and one or two on two or three on three

Second Point Foolish Failure Attitude

Asians are poor athletes.

Third Point Foolish Failure Attitude

Ivy League schools do not produce great athletes.

Failure To See Opportunities

These foolish failure attitudes put Lin in the NBA D-League three times. Coaches passed him over or put him in a back up spot. Finally able to show his stuff for the Knicks, Lin led “a turnaround of an 8–15 team that had lost 11 of its last 13 games.” In short order, “Lin became the first NBA player to score at least 20 points and have seven assists in each of his first five starts.”

Taiwanese American and Harvard grad Jeremy Lin does not do “anything that’s extra flashy or freakishly athletic”, but he is savvy in scoring, assists, steals, blocked shots, field-goal percentage, and free-throw percentage.

How many other valuable players have been left in the D-League or on the bench by basketball’s three point foolish failure attitude?

Other kinds of foolish failure are possible in basketball. Signed to the Houston Rockets, one of Jeremy Lin’s teammates is James Harden. Lin and Harden are good at the same things. They each play their best when the other one does not play. Someone needs to identify a smarter way to use all of their skills all of the time.

Coaches failed to see opportunities for team success
in an Asian player who did not play the stereotyped way
because they did not understand how
how Jeremy Lin’s success was connected to their success.

“Jeremy Lin: Fernando Valenzuela understands Lin-Sanity first hand”
Daniel Brown
San Jose Mercury News
February 16, 2012

“An All-Around Talent, Obscured by His Pedigree”
Chuck Culpepper
The New York Times
September 14, 2010

“From Couch To Clutch”
Pablo S. Torre
Sports Illustrated
February 20, 2012


Paula M. Kramer
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A web host transfer made some posts disappear. Luckily, I copied each post and emailed it to myself. Since I alternated success and failure posts, I will have to remove posts and republish them in success and failure order. I will do this as I have time. Apologies.