LIN: You know, everything. To have your life in constant scrutiny and all the pressures, you have to think — yeah. And a lot of people that you love dearly, you have to say no to constantly or you have to set up boundaries for yourself because everyone wants something from you. All you do is like play basketball. And this is a real thing. But the guy has spent all his time making himself a great basketball player. The amount of effort, the heart, the love for the game, those types of things, and then for everyone else to from the outside come in and make fun of him or whatever in his 25th year.
Meanwhile, he spent 25 years giving up all the different temptations or the different things that everyone else has allowed themselves to enjoy. But then fans are so quick to just only think about it from their end. You hurt my fantasy team! I definitely — I just warn people and try to warn my friends and my family to when they are making judgments on a football player or on anybody or even a musician.
Like, respect greatness.
Atlanta Hawks: Making sense of the Jeremy Lin trade
I think the verdict is still out. DUBNER: So do you have thoughts about what specifically you want to do after basketball toward addressing those kinds of problems? I just think for me right now, playing in the N. DUBNER: So let me ask you this: something you mentioned about trying to focus on your athletic afterlife during your athletic career. And one leverage is that you can have — you can meet people. People are excited to meet you. Maybe to work with you and so on. So I have a Taiwan agency, a China agency, a U. We have a whole bunch of business ventures.
But I think from our end, we are really really proactive about it. In other words are you pretty much full time year round as an athlete, or no? LIN: Definitely all year around. If you go lighter training, you can do it for longer, but yeah. Or do you want to be behind the scenes? Do you want to be involved in research? Do you want to be involved in the political end? And some of it might cross into public policy or it might cross into meeting with government officials in China or different things like that. Whatever it really takes to help people.
LIN: Yeah. LIN: No. Every single person in Asia knows who he is. And they have their team, and me and Jay, we have our team. And congratulations on the success, obviously. When you look at your post-N. In other words, do you want to do a lot of projects and businesses that make a lot of money, or are you mostly interested in focusing on philanthropy?
I dream big and I would love to do both. When I think about my business stuff, I actually connect a lot of my philanthropy into it. Even now when I do stuff, when I get equity in companies or when I have endorsements that pay me or whatever. Or even what I do with my personal finances or things like that.
Everything kind of ties back into everything, and my goal is to have my endorsements and my business ventures in those different things supporting my foundation and supporting the kids. And we fill an arena with 10, people and we get some of the top celebrities to come in Asia. And this past year we had I believe 18 million people watching online. LIN: And then after we have a massive auction. I think for me I would rather have top impact over top dollar. And I think even in personal finances, a great example of that is impact investing.
Onward and Upward with Jeremy Lin
You grew up with immigrant parents, Palo Alto, California, not a lot of money. LIN: Yeah, my my personal financial philosophy is — and it has always been pretty much the same, like you said, immigrant parents. I would say my parents, they made a solid amount for sure. We were middle class, for sure.
And I think — but the problem is our expenses were so high. LIN: All of us. B ut all of us because my parents gave us the widest range of extracurriculars to allow us to really pursue any avenue we wanted. And I really liked being better than other people. Bill James was then busy popularizing an approach, rooted in statistical reasoning, to thinking about baseball.
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That particular suspicion had been born the year before, , after Sports Illustrated splashed his favorite baseball team, the Cleveland Indians, on its cover and picked them to win the World Series. The Indians have sucked for years. Then he discovered Bill James and decided that, like Bill James, he might use numbers to make better predictions than the experts.
If he could predict the future performance of professional athletes, he could build winning sports teams, and if he could build winning sports teams. He received not a single reply. If I was rich I could just buy a team and run it. His parents were middle-class Midwesterners. He was also a distinctly unmotivated student at Northwestern University.
He nevertheless set out to make enough money to buy a professional sports team, so that he might make the decisions about who would be on it. The firm was advising Internet companies during the Internet bubble: That sounded, at the time, like a way to get rich quick. Then the bubble burst and all the shares were worthless. No one can predict the price of oil.
It was basically nonsense. Later, when basketball scouts came to him looking for jobs, the trait he looked for was some awareness that they were seeking answers to questions with no certain answers—that they were inherently fallible. Which future superstar had they written off, or which future bust had they fallen in love with?
By a stroke of luck, the consulting firm Morey worked for was asked to perform some analysis for a group trying to buy the Boston Red Sox. When that group failed in its bid to buy a professional baseball team, it went out and bought a professional basketball team, the Boston Celtics.
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In the Celtics had encouraged him to use it to pick a player at the tail end of the draft—the 56th pick, when the players seldom amount to anything. Hunter actually started for the Celtics for a season and went on to a successful career in Europe. Two years later Morey got a call from a headhunter who sait that the Houston Rockets were looking for a new general manager. We now have all this data. And we have computers that can analyze that data.
And I wanted to use that data in a progressive way. When I hired Daryl, it was because I wanted somebody that was doing more than just looking at players in the normal way. Learning that a thirty-three-year-old geek had been hired to run the Houston Rockets, fans and basketball insiders were at best bemused and at worst hostile.
The local Houston radio guys instantly gave him a nickname: Deep Blue. In his approach to the world he was exactly the opposite. The closest he came to certainty was in his approach to making decisions. He never simply went with his first thought. He suggested a new definition of the nerd: a person who knows his own mind well enough to mistrust it. One of the first things Morey did after he arrived in Houston—and, to him, the most important—was to install his statistical model for predicting the future performance of basketball players.
Most people just do it subconsciously. Once you had a database of thousands of former players, you could search for more general correlations between their performance in college and their professional careers. Obviously their performance statistics told you something about them. But which ones?
You might believe—many then did—that the most important thing a basketball player did was to score points. That opinion could now be tested: Did an ability to score points in college predict NBA success? No, was the short answer. From early versions of his model, Morey knew that the traditional counting statistics—points, rebounds, and assists per game—could be wildly misleading. It was possible for a player to score a lot of points and hurt his team, just as it was possible for a player to score very little and be a huge asset. Why is someone ranked so low by scouts when the model has him ranked high?
If the player had broken his neck the night before the NBA draft, for instance, it would be nice to know. That counted as original, in Morey could see that no one else was using a model to judge basketball players—no one had bothered to acquire the information needed by any model. Any theory about basketball players had to be tested on a database of players. They now had a twenty-year history of college players. The new database allowed you to compare players to similar players from the past, and see if there were any general lessons to be learned.
There was nothing simple or obvious about it in They tracked the scoring in the game when a given player was on the court, compared to when he was on the bench. Points and rebounds and steals per game were not very useful; but points and rebounds and steals per minute had value. It was also possible to back out from the box scores the pace at which various college teams played—how often they went up and down the court. Just adjusting for pace gave you a clearer picture of what any given player had accomplished than the conventional view did.
Did it help a player to have two parents in his life? Was it an advantage to be left-handed? Did players with strong college coaches tend to do better in the NBA? Did it help if a player had a former NBA player in his lineage? If his college coach played zone defense? If he had played multiple positions in college? Did it matter how much weight a player could bench-press? But not everything. Rebounds per minute were useful in predicting the future success of big guys. Steals per minute told you something about the small ones. The Rockets had traded their picks in That year, the Rockets held the 26th and the 31st picks in the NBA draft.
The chance of getting a starter was roughly one in a hundred. He knew that his model was, at best, only slightly less flawed than the human beings who had rendered the judgments about job applicants since time began. He knew that he suffered from a serious dearth of good data.
And even that has problems with it. So how are we supposed to? Then came That year the Rockets had the 25th pick in the draft and used it to pick a big guy from the University of Memphis named Joey Dorsey. After he was drafted, Dorsey was sent to Santa Cruz to play in an exhibition game against other newly drafted players. Morey went to go see him. We have a two-hour lunch. And he comes out and sucks the next game, too.
The problem was his model. His signal was super, super high. This sort of thing happened every year to some NBA team, and usually to all of them. Every year there were great players the scouts missed, and every year highly regarded players went bust. His entire life had been shaped by this single, tantalizing idea: He could use numbers to make better predictions.
The plausibility of that idea was now in question. For that matter, Morey realized, there existed an entire class of college basketball player who played far better against weak opponents than against strong ones. Basketball bullies. The model could account for that, too, by assigning greater weight to games played against strong opponents than against weak ones. That also improved the model. Morey could see—or thought he could see—how the model had been fooled by Joey Dorsey. Its blindness to the value of DeAndre Jordan was far more troubling. The kid had played a single year of college basketball, not very effectively.
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Everybody But Jeremy Lin | The New Yorker
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He was credited with a steal after tying up Cook and watching the Warriors win the ensuing jump ball. The Palo Alto native played only three minutes all season, but played logged 16 minutes, including 11 minutes in the third quarter. October 31, Lin committed five fouls in his first 11 minutes, but also played a role in Golden State's 12—1 run in the third. November 8, Archived from the original on November 10, Retrieved November 10, Rookie guard Jeremy Lin saw 15 minutes of action, most of them in the first half.
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