Jeremy Lin of the New York Knicks and Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers are two of the biggest stars in the NBA right now. One has been a star forever, the other has learned what the spotlight's like in one week. And now they collide in Madison Square Garden.
Let's get real. Lin and Bryant don't play the same position, and it's not like they're going to be matching up on each other to start up. It's more likely that Lin will be matched up against Derek Fisher and Steve Blake, who on paper should be perfect matches for Lin to exploit. Neither have the ability to stay in front of Lin for too long though, which might mean Bryant might be forced to check Lin at some point in the game.
However, more critical for Lin will be how he can deal with the imposing Laker big men inside. Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol are not going to be so easily dislodged from the paint, and the Laker defense has generally been very good when the main players are in the game. Lin might have his way against the second-unit Lakers, but producing against the starters might be a difficult task unless he gets help from everyone else.