For those of you not living in New York or who don't follow NBA basketball, the toast of Gotham is Jeremy Lin, an unheralded, undrafted, and un-scholarshipped (is that a word?) point guard who just led the Knicks to their 4th straight win over the Lakers. He scored 38 points to pace the Knickerbockers, playing without their two stars, over LA 92-85. Lin is an amazing story: after leading his high school to the state championship, no college offered him a scholarship. I read last night that a coach at UCLA, Lin's dream school, admitted that had they been wise enough to recruit him, he would have started for the Bruins. He played at Harvard and was undrafted by any NBA team. Two clubs cut him before the Knicks picked him up. He's only been in town a couple of weeks and probably would still be on the bench if the squad weren't plagued by injuries. And all he's done is play out of his mind and lead the Knickerbockers to 4 straight wins.
One of the announcers tonight mentioned that Jeremy is staying at his brother's house on the lower east side on a couch. They went on to say that some real estate agents must be licking their chops, because Lin is not leaving New York anytime soon. I agree- Mr Lin is not going to be some journeyman who gets cut, waived, traded or sent back to D-League. He's staying in Madison Square Garden and he's going to have to do better than his brother's couch.
If Jeremy wanted to live in the suburbs, Westchester would be the best choice in my mind, and I think I know a good broker for him to call. However, I think he'll stay in Manhattan, and that gets my wheels turning because I know an agent or two that, if I were in his shoes, I would use to find a home.
I have done business with Eileen Hsu for years and she'd be a phenomenal choice. Eileen is a tremendous talent, a great advocate and negotiator, and possesses an incredibly committed work ethic. I have had a front row seat in some transactions of a highly difficult nature where Eileen gave virtuoso performances and got the job done elegantly.
My friend Doug Heddings also comes to mind. Heddings Property Group is perhaps the most forward thinking and innovative real estate brokerage in Manhattan. The firm's growth proves that Dog knows where this industry needs to go to truly serve the public.
Of course, Knick hall of famer and announcer Walt Frazier's son Walt Frazier Jr is an agent with Keller Williams in Manhattan, and he may already be on the job. I had the good fortune of meeting Walt at the New York RE Bar camp last month, and I remembered him from his own illustrious college basketball career at Penn when he played some great games against my alma mater, Villanova, and ruined our chances of winning the Big 5 in 1988-89. Walt, who has the heart of a champion, runs a great operation.
But alas, in the post game tonight the commentators mentioned that Jeremy has been offered the apartment of ex-teammate David Lee in White Plains.
What really gets me jazzed about Jeremy Lin is not the pipe dream of being his real estate agent. My 9-year old son Luke has coincidentally discovered a love of basketball in the last few months. Luke has ADD and last year, prior to his diagnosis, he had to endure some difficult times in school both academically and socially. It is not easy for a father to see that, and Ann and I have worked hard to help him. I had ADD too and sports made a huge difference for me. It is beginning to make a difference for Luke. He and I will be going to some games aside from the ones we play in the driveway, and a role model like Mr Lin makes a father's job easier. His story of perseverance and faith is an inspiration. And that's why Madison Square Garden is electric again.
Update: Lin is out in front again- NY Post already reported he's househunting!