Lin's return to Oracle puts friendship with Curry on hold

Lin's return to Oracle puts friendship with Curry on hold
February 12, 2013, 2:15 pm
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Jeremy Lin averaged under 10 minuters per game as Stephen Curry's teammate. Two years later, he's playing over 30 minutes a game for the Rockets. (AP)

Friendships go out the way when you step on the court.
—Stephen Curry

OAKLAND -- Only three players that played during the 2010-11 season -- the season Rockets guard Jeremy Lin broke into the NBA with Golden State -- remain on the Warriors roster.

Andris Biedrins, David Lee and Stephen Curry.

Lin was one of the first additions by the new ownership group of Joe Lacob and Peter Guber. And as a Palo Alto native with vast international popularity, some saw the signing of the first Taiwanese-American to an NBA team as a marketing ploy.

But Lin proved his NBA mettle a year later with the Knicks, and still holds Golden State ownership in high regard for giving him his chance. He intimated as much during the Rockets' shootaround Tuesday morning.

"I say thank you," said Lin. "I know I wouldn't have this opportunity if it wasn't for (Kirk Lacob) and his dad and believing in me from summer league.

"I'm going to try my best to treat it as just another game, but for me it's kind of like my career coming full circle in terms of growing up here, playing here, leaving Golden State and coming back around. So I'm going to have fun out there and enjoy it."

New York enjoyed "Linsanity" when the Knicks, at 8-13, rode the second-year player to seven consecutive victories. His averages of 14.6 points and 6.2 assists yielded a three-year, $25.12 million contract with Houston last offseason.

Tuesday night, Lin returns to Oracle arena to face the team that gave him his start with the task of guarding the NBA guard he first looked up to -- Curry.

"We talk a lot," Curry said of his former teammate. "We have a lot of things in common off the court."

They share a few things on the court as well. Curry and Lin are each the primary ball handlers for teams that, if the season ended today, would be in the Western Conference playoffs. The Rockets cling to the eighth seed, two games ahead of Portland and three games behind sixth-seeded Golden State.

"But I told him going into the season, friendships go out the way when you step on the court," said Curry. "You have to have that competitive fire no matter who is across from you on the line."

Lin got the better of Curry in their first regular season matchup, scoring 28 points on 10-of-16 shooting with nine assists and two turnovers. Curry finished 3-of-12 from the field, going for seven points and nine assists.

"We'll take a brief pause on our friendship tonight."

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