Jeremy Lin was an absolute steal for the Charlotte Hornets this season. There should not be any debate about that. He was one of the team's best and most consistent players. His game fit perfectly into what Charlotte was trying to accomplish this season by completely changing their offensive scheme.
After signing a two-year/$4.3 million deal with the Hornets in the off-season, Lin proved that his value far exceeded his contract. He was a premier back-up point guard in the NBA and he even received some votes for sixth man of the year this season. Not many back-up point guard were better than Jeremy this year.
Lin averaged 11.7 points per game, a career high 3.2 rebounds per game, and 3.0 assists per game this past season. He shot 41.2% from the field and 33.6% from the three-point line. Jeremy also appeared in 78 games for Charlotte and only missed four games all year. He also started 13 games and averaged 26.3 minutes per game.
Jeremy fit perfectly into head coach, Steve Clifford’s, system this season as he ran the second unit and even played with the starters down the stretch of close games.
Lin was a valuable player to Charlotte this year and his ability to run the pick-and-roll was a huge plus for the team. Many doubted Lin's abilities entering the season but he proved that he is a top-level point guard in the league when given the opportunities.
A lot of critics were skeptical of Lin's all-around game and his defensive ability but he proved to be a key player for the team on both sides of the floor. He was not a liability on the defensive end and his offensive skills were far better than expected. There is no question that Jeremy was a huge part of the team's success this year.
When Jeremy was given his chance to start because of injuries to other players, he had breakout games where he would score 20+ almost every time.. He was the perfect complement to Kemba Walker off of the bench. His mentality and personality fit perfectly with the up and coming Hornets.
The only problem with Jeremy was that he almost played too well. Now the Hornets will have to have a bidding war with other teams around the NBA to re-sign him. Another knock on him would be his somewhat poor shooting this season. Lin shot his worst percentages from the field and the three-point line in the past four seasons.
The Charlotte Hornets will need to make a major decision regarding Lin this summer as he is set to decline his player option and become an unrestricted free agent. There will be a lot of teams throwing big money his way this off-season. It will be difficult for the team to bring him back but both sides are interested if the money is right.
It will be interesting to see if Jeremy re-signs in Charlotte next season. The team will need to put a large amount of money towards bringing him back but they must also deal with their other key free agents. My gut feeling says that Lin leaves only because the Hornets may not have enough money and playing time to offer him what he will get from other teams around the league. Of course, I would love to see him return.