Jeremy Lin is heading to China for the 2019-20 season — the former Toronto Raptor has signed with the Beijing Shougang Ducks of the Chinese Basketball Association, Sportsnet reported.
After local media outlets in Beijing first reported the move, Lin confirmed the news on social media, posting a video of him signing a contract and another of him wearing his new club’s jersey.
He later posted a message to Instagram thanking all those who cheered him on during his NBA tenure, the report said.
“The journey and privilege to rep Asians at the NBA level has been amazing and I’m overwhelmed with gratitude for each person who has been with me each step of the way,” Lin wrote on Instagram.
“Equally excited for this next step with the Beijing Ducks! I always knew my path would go through the CBA solely [because] I knew how much of an honour it would be to hoop in front of all my Chinese fans. I’m here now and can’t wait for the season.”
Lin has spent parts of the past nine seasons in the NBA, splitting that near-decade run between eight teams, the report said.
The Torrance, Calif., native walks away from the NBA as a champion, having claimed the title this past June. Prior to his run in Toronto, Lin opened the 2018-19 campaign with the Atlanta Hawks, following a two-year stretch with the Brooklyn Nets, a season apiece with the Charlotte Hornets and Los Angeles Lakers, and a pair of seasons with the Houston Rockets.
The 31-year-old originally rose to prominence in New York, sparking a ‘Linsanity’ wave among the Knicks faithful as he made his name in Madison Square Garden. His first foray into the NBA came via a brief stint with the Golden State Warriors.
Lin averaged seven points, 2.2 assists and 2.6 rebounds in a limited role for Toronto last season, playing 18.8 minutes per game through 23 regular-season tilts. He played 3.4 minutes per playoff game over the course of the Raptors’ championship run, the report said.
The first American of Chinese or Taiwanese descent to play in the NBA, Lin said recently he felt he’d hit rock bottom this summer during his post-championship free-agency process.
“When you hit rock bottom the only way is up, but rock bottom just seems to keep getting more and more rock bottom for me,” Lin said during an appearance on GOOD TV, a Christian television station in Taiwan, in July. “So free agency has been tough, ’cause I feel like in some ways the NBA has kind of given up on me.”
He now joins a strong club in the Ducks, who’ve claimed the CBA title three times over the past eight seasons.