As expected, Lin Guan-luen was named last weekend’s SBL Player of the Week for his outstanding efforts in guiding the Dacin Tigers to three straight victories in an arduous, three-game weekend.
Members of the Basketball Writers’ Association were near-unanimous in their decision to honor the Tigers guard for his contribution in lifting the once-struggling Cats past worthy opponents such as top-ranked Pure Youth Construction and second-placed Taiwan Mobile Cloud Leopards, breathing new life into his team’s season.
The journeyman out of National Taiwan Normal University, who has spent 10 years with six different teams, including double stints with Kinmen Kaoliang and the Tigers, and a brief departure across the Taiwan Strait to the Chinese Basketball Association in 2010, has emerged as one of the league’s premier scorers with a fully matured understanding of the game and a well-developed perimeter game that makes him a scoring threat anywhere from within 8m of the basket.
His 20-point outing against the Leopards and 35-point outburst versus the Builders were cases in point, with Lin picking apart the opposing defense and wearing them down at critical junctures in the game.
“I’d like to thank my teammates and coaches for making [the Player of the Week award] possible,” Lin said upon learning of his selection.
His continuing success will not only mean a brighter future for the Cats, but also bad news for their opponents now that he is back in the shooting guard position, as opposed to the point guard role that skipper Hsu Chih-chao had handed him earlier this season.
The Tigers have the chance to extend their three-game winning streak on the first weekend of the year with back-to-back matches against the Distillers and Taiwan Beer, both former teams of Lin.
Nothing would please Hsu and Lin more than a win over the teams who topped the Cats in their last meetings by narrow margins, the former in a three-point win that went down to the wire and the latter in a triple-overtime thriller.
Bank of Taiwan begin the New Year with an uphill battle against the Brew Crew at the Sinjhuang Sports Complex in New Taipei City this evening, followed by a marquee showdown between Pure Youth Construction and Kinmen Kaoliang.