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Knicks guard Jeremy Lin: Why we love his 'Lin-derella' story

Jeremy Lin is humble. He's religious. His style recalls an earlier era. And the Knicks guard's path to the NBA was unconventional, which gives us hope for our own lives.

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New York Knicks guard Jeremy Lin drives into Sacramento Kings Isaiah Thomas during the third quarter of their NBA basketball game in New York's Madison Square Garden, Wednesday.

Mike Segar/Reuters

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The tabloids are calling it a “Lin-derella” story.

Jeremy Lin, a humble Chinese-American Harvard grad and basketball player trying to make his way in the NBA, is picked up off waivers by the underperforming New York Knicks, where he is a deep bench player. Summoned to play in place of an injured starter, he leads the team to victory after victory, creating an overnight global sensation: Linsanity.

A curious and basketball-savvy President Obama watches Mr. Lin’s highlights – such as a buzzer-beating three-pointer against Toronto Tuesday night, or outscoring LA Laker superstar Kobe Bryant on Feb. 10.

Wednesday night, former President Bill Clinton and former Vice President Al Gore showed up to cheer him on as the Knicks defeated the Sacramento Kings for their seventh straight, a game in which Lin racked up a career-best 13 assists despite sitting out the fourth quarter (for rest).

Lin, the first American-born NBA player of Chinese or Taiwanese descent, has 355,985 followers on Twitter and 630,312 “Likes” on Facebook. YouTube is filled with Lin clips, some attracting hundreds of thousands of hits. The Chinese media is flooded with his basketball highlights, even though his family’s roots are in Taiwan.

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