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Gauging the Loss of Lin: Different perspectives

NBA: Brooklyn Nets at Indiana Pacers Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

In the week since Jeremy Lin went down —and out— with a ruptured patellar tendon, the Nets have rallied, won two games and looked like a complete and competent team, even without their acknowledged leader.

Now, a number of writers are opining on how much the loss will hurt Brooklyn in the long term, that is beyond a small sample of two games.

Steve Lichtenstein of WFAN, thinks the Nets will miss Lin’s intangibles, starting with his maturity and work ethic...

I’m not in any rush to proclaim the impact from Lin’s injury one way or another. Nets fans may be giddy that their team shrugged off the blow so quickly and now sports a winning record (2-1) for the first time in nearly three years, but there’s no question that Marks and Atkinson valued Lin’s leadership and work ethic — attributes they hoped would rub off on Russell — not just the numbers Lin posted on the court that have since been adequately replaced by the next men up (first Crabbe, and then LeVert, in the vacated slot among the starting five; Spencer Dinwiddie is in an expanded reserve role; and Joe Harris has been elevated to the rotation.

Frank Urbina, writing for Hoopshype, talks not just about the intangibles, but Lin’s prowess at the pick-and-roll and in iso situations, two skills that complement Russell’s. They should have worked well together.

The 2017-18 Nets, with their floor general leading the way, were supposed to surprise teams. Lin and newly acquired young stud D’Angelo Russell were going to form a not-exactly-elite-but-still-exhilarating-to-behold backcourt in a weakened Eastern Conference.

Russell, thus far, has held up his end of the bargain. Through three games, the third-year off-ball guard is averaging 21.0 points, 4.3 rebounds and 7.0 assists per night in Kenny Atkinson’s offense-friendly system...

But for all of the on-court production the Nets may be able to replace with Russell, Allen Crabbe and DeMarre Carroll, it’s Lin’s guidance they’ll miss most.

On the other hand, Michael DePrisco, writing for Unbalanced, thinks Lin’s loss will force the younger Nets to step up ... and that is not a bad thing.

Lin was a major part in Brooklyn's resurrection project as a veteran leader among all these young pieces. The bright side for the Nets is that they'll get to find out exactly what they have in their young players. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Isaiah Whitehead, Allen Crabbe, and Jarrett Allen along with Russell and Levert will have plenty of opportunity to showcase their skill sets in order to carve out a spot in Brooklyn's future plans.

Like we said, it’s a small sample, but it is intriguing.