Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Taiwan Needs Jeremy LIn for FIBA World Cup

Houston Rockets point guard Jeremy Lin, who is of Chinese and Taiwanese descent, has been invited several times to play in international basketball competitions. Rivals China and Taiwan have each sent invitations to Lin, while USA Basketball picked him as one of the 13 members of the USA select team in summer 2012. However, the 25-year-old has still not committed to any international play.

Still, Lin has remained opened to playing for the pride and honor of his home country – and that’s Taiwan. During his latest visit there, Lin spoke about the importance of playing for Chinese Taipei in future basketball competitions, though he was uncertain when the opportunity would arise.

“I try not to think too far,” Lin told Focus Taiwan. “I can’t speak for the future … I’m not making decisions until the time is appropriate.”

Taiwan fell short of securing a place in next year’s FIBA World Cup after finishing fourth in the FIBA Asia Championship in Manila. However, the country still has a chance to punch their ticket to Spain, if they are only willing to put up a fee worth 500,000 Euros for one of the available wild-card spots. Bringing in an NBA-caliber player like Lin would be sure to enhance Taiwan’s bid.

But losses to Iran in the semifinals on Aug. 10 and to South Korea on Aug. 11, dashed those hopes.

In Lin’s case, the Rockets point guard would also benefit a lot from playing against the finest basketball players in the world. Plus Taiwan would benefit greatly from his abilities.

Historically, NBA players that have participated in major basketball tournaments such as the Olympics and the FIBA World Cup produced very well in the upcoming season. LeBron James, James Harden, Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant and Tyson Chandler played won the gold at 2012 London Olympics, and all of them returned with a better statistical season.

Tags: Houston Rockets Jeremy Lin NBA NBA Offseason

  • Jeff baker

    Personally, I’m not sure how much Jeremy Lin considers Taiwan his “home country,” being that he was born and raised in California, USA and has not permanently lived anywhere else. That’s like saying all the black USA team players aren’t playing for their respective “home” countries in Africa. Then again I’m not saying that I am right and you are wrong, because it ultimately comes down to what your operational definition of the phrase “home country” is, and since that is not established the term is open to interpretation.

    • Phillip Pyle II

      For Taiwan’s sake “home country” isn’t open to interpretation, Unfortunately the majority of black USA team players have no idea which African country they are from.

    • Michael Ma

      I think the thing that people don’t understand is that Jeremy is a 2nd generation Asian-American meaning his roots in America are not as deep as some of the black USA players, who’s families have been living in the states for a number of generations.

      • JoeLin Y

        uhhhh……………………………………….. are you from the bay area..?

        • Michael Ma

          No I’m not, and my comment wasn’t directed to Asian-Americans specifically, it was more about trying to make the comparison to the black USA players that @Jeff had brought up in his comment.

          America is obviously Jeremy’s home country, the place where he grew up, just like so many Asian-Americans out there including myself, but yet the the term home country could have a completely different meaning in Taiwan.

          • JoeLin Y

            very true

    • wurniy8342

      I was a bit puzzled by the phrase. In Canada, its quite common for olympians/athletes to go play for their parent(s) origin of birth regardless if its their mom or dad (or whether the parent is part of that nationality) instead of their own place of birth – Canada. I can recall many Canadian born athletes choosing to play for England, Australia, U.S. (with support in Canada) rather than Canada, but none have went to Asia even though there have been high calibre Asian-Canadian athletes representing Canada past and present. It is hard to tell if there would a double standard in terms of support at this point.

  • Tim Nguyen

    Lin is American how about put him on Team USA that would be awesome