Trying to escape from under the shadow of a successful older sibling can be tough sometimes. It’s probably even tougher when your older brother just happens to be one of the only Asian American players in the NBA.
But 26-year-old Joseph Lin has found a way to blossom.
He won’t be joining his older brother in the NBA anytime soon, but the younger Lin — now in his fourth year as a pro for the Fubon Braves of Taiwan’s Super Basketball League (SBL) — has quietly but assuredly made a name for himself as a player in his own right, half a world away.
When Linsanity broke out in 2012, Joseph Lin was a freshman point guard at Hamilton College, a Division III school in Upstate New York, The New Yorker reported.
He majored in econ, just like Jeremy, and had a passion for illustration, video games and, of course, basketball. Nearing graduation, it was the former two options Lin was considering career-wise… that is, until the Braves came calling.
The summer prior, Lin had accompanied his older brother on his annual Asia tour and got the chance to scrimmage against pro teams in Taiwan — including the Fubon Braves.
Evidently, they liked what they saw. Lin signed with the Braves the summer of 2015, shortly after graduating.
It took a while for Lin to get acquainted with the pro game, much like his brother. He struggled at times during his rookie season.
“There was a period where I was averaging 5 points and 2 assists,” Lin told NBC News. “I would get into foul trouble and not really play for the whole first half so that was really tough. I was like, dang. I actually questioned ‘am I this good? Like am I this bad? Am I going to play like this for the rest of the season?'”
As it turned out, the answer was a definitive no. Lin ended his rookie campaign averaging 12 points per game and took home the SBL Rookie of the Year Award.
Lin improved steadily each year, becoming a leader for a team that reached the SBL Finals last season.
Alas, even with Jeremy and his family cheering him on, the Braves fell to Pauian in six games.
Midway through the 2018-2019 season, Lin and the Braves have returned with a vengeance. After struggling for much of the beginning of the season, Fubon now holds the third-best record in the league and Lin has fully come into his own, dropping an incredible career-high 40 points in December.
“We are 10-3 of our last 13 games,” Lin wrote in an Instagram post. “What we trippin about? Need more trust and positivity. Smh.”