Houston Rockets: Kevin McHale Hammered With Jeremy Lin’s Starting Status From Taiwan Media

By Michael Ma

Head Coach Kevin McHale of the Houston Rockets speaks during a press conference in Taipei on October 11, 2013. The Indiana Pacers and Houston Rockets arrived in the Taipei of Taiwan on October 11 for the southeast Asian nation’s first hosting of an NBA game on October 13. AFP PHOTO / Mandy CHENGMandy Cheng/AFP/Getty Images

For just a couple of days, Kevin McHale may not feel like the head coach of the Houston Rockets anymore. Instead, he’s being treated as the head coach of Jeremy Lin, when the media in Taiwan directed nearly all of their questions toward’s McHale’s decision of not starting Lin in the Rockets pre-season win over the Indiana Pacers in Manila.

Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle stated that the focus was on Lin’s status for Sunday afternoon’s game, McHale’s decision of not starting Lin in Manila, and how Lin played last season:

“Before the media could get to questions for Lin on Friday, they had more than a few for McHale, mostly about what he thinks about Jeremy Lin. The inquisition began with McHale being asked if he had chosen his regular-season starting point guard after bringing the 6-3 Lin off the bench in Thursday’s preseason game against the Pacers at Manila.

“I just alternate starting guys,” McHale said. “I just want to see guys come off the bench, see how it works. We have a lot of new faces. I talked to Jeremy and Patrick (Beverley, 25) about it. Both are playing very, very well. Patrick played very well and Jeremy has been playing tremendous. The first couple days I was worried about him, but I tell you, about three or four days into camp he started playing really well, high energy.

“He had a great summer of work. He’s lost a little weight. I like his shot. It’s tighter. He really worked hard all summer and it shows. He drove hard left. He had a left-hand layup last night, full contact. All the stuff we talked about. I’m excited about having both those guys. The nice thing that happened last night is they both played very well. I wouldn’t get all excited about who starts in a preseason game.”

McHale also tried his best to explain that having both Patrick Beverley and Lin play at such high levels so far is a luxury, not a dilemma. His decision of who eventually starts will be based on the best fit for the team, not who’s the better player.

For the country of Taiwan, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to host an NBA game in which their hero will be playing in. And while all the attention and focus is on Lin, the Rockets will have work to take care of as a team come game time Sunday afternoon(early Sunday morning in the U.S.)