How about that Jeremy Lin? Even in the NBA D-League, where the New York Knicks’ two-week legend and tabloid newspaper cover boy played one game with the Erie BayHawks last month, his majestic presence was felt all the way to Fort Wayne and inside Memorial Coliseum on Thursday.
What else can the answer be for visiting Erie to put on such a shooting display?
The BayHawks (15-16) blistered the three-point line by hitting 16 of 30 long range shots in their 113-108 victory over the Mad Ants (10-22), a team that takes its six-game losing streak on the road tonight to face the Texas Legends.
I give them a lot of credit, Ants veteran guard Ron Howard said. They’re coming straight down the lane, you’ve got to pick them up, and they make the correct pass. And D.J. Kennedy, he’s probably never shot the ball that well in his life.
Kennedy, a 6-foot-5 guard from St. John’s who made the BayHawks from open tryouts, hit seven of eight three-pointers and finished with a career-high 28 points. Mychel Thompson, a 6-7 forward, was nearly as lethal, making five of seven and winding up with 21 points.
The 16 three-pointers were the most this season by Erie, whose previous high was 10.
The whole thing about our defense is we don’t want to give up the middle or dribble penetration, Ants coach Steve Gansey said. They hit shots, man. I’m really not catching a break with these opposing teams coming here, and they’re absolutely hot.
Which explains the one-game Linsanity for the BayHawks, who used a 28-point game from Lin to beat Maine on Jan. 20
The Ants raced out to a 7-0 lead. But Erie hit a three; then another; then another. Its first five baskets were from three-point shots. The BayHawks even closed the half with a three.
Nevertheless, the Mad Ants persevered and remained vigilant. Getting 15 points in the third quarter alone from Cam Jones (he would finish with 19), the Ants trailed 89-88 with 8:15 still remaining.
But then came the rain of threes again: Two of them came from Kennedy within 30 seconds, and Thompson hit another. By then it was a 100-89 game with the fourth quarter halfway to go.
Darnell Lazare led the Ants with 28 points.