The No. 17 New York Knicks jersey Jeremy Lin wore in outdueling National Basketball Association scoring leader Kobe Bryant will be auctioned for charity, the team said.
The highest bidder on CharityBuzz.com for the autographed jersey worn during the Knicks’ 92-85 win over the Los Angeles Lakers on Feb. 10 also will get four tickets to New York’s Feb. 22 game against the Atlanta Hawks and an opportunity to meet Lin, the team said in a statement.
The proceeds from the auction, which ends Feb. 21, will benefit the Garden of Dreams Foundation, a nonprofit organization that works closely with Madison Square Garden Co. in making wishes come true for children facing obstacles. The top bid is currently $4,750.
Lin, the first Harvard University graduate to play in the NBA since Ed Smith in 1953-54 and the fourth Asian American in league history, has captured the imagination of Knicks’ fans and worldwide attention since first playing extended minutes in a Feb. 4 win over the New Jersey Nets, scoring 25 points with seven assists.
A second-year player, Lin was cut by both the Golden State Warriors and the Houston Rockets during the offseason. This week he’s on the cover of Sports Illustrated.
He was added to New York’s starting lineup Feb. 6 against the Utah Jazz and became the first player in NBA history to score at least 20 points and collect seven assists in his first four starts, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Lin, 23, scored a career-high 38 points in leading New York to the win over the Lakers and Bryant, who had 34.
Playing mostly without All-Stars Carmelo Anthony, who is injured, and Amar’e Stoudemire, whose brother died in a car accident, the Knicks (13-15) have won five straight games.
Stoudemire will return tonight as New York visits the Toronto Raptors in what will be a sellout, according to Tom Anselmi, the Raptors’ chief operating officer.
“You’ve caught lightning in a bottle with the young fella,” Anselmi said in a telephone interview. “We’ve probably sold 3,000 tickets in the last couple of days.”
The game will be the third sellout this season for the Raptors (9-20) at the 19,800-seat Air Canada Centre, Anselmi said. The team is averaging 16,550 fans per game.
New York begins a five-game homestand tomorrow at Madison Square Garden against the Sacramento Kings. The average online ticket price for the game has risen 94 percent to $293 in the last week, according to TiqIQ, an aggregator of the ticket resale market.