Jeremy Lin said being the only Asian player in the NBA "at times, kinda sucks" in an interview released on Friday.
In a Q&A with The Undefeated's Cary Chow, Lin discussed his Asian-American identity, how he views the success of other Asian-American athletes like Kyler Murray and his popularity in Taiwan.
When asked what it is like to be the only Asian-American in the NBA, Lin said: "At times it kind of sucks. At other times it’s amazing. Amazing because you get to challenge everyone’s viewpoints and perspectives. I’m rooting for so many more Asians to come in. Last year, when I was with Brooklyn and we had Ding [Yanyuhang] on the Summer League team, I was like, 'Dude, please make the team. We’d have so much fun together during the season.'"
Lin, the first Taiwanese-American player in the NBA, also talked about his experiences dealing with racist reactions to his success.
"Even as I came out and started to play well, a lot of the jokes that were being said and a lot of the hate coming the other way, I was like, 'Man, some of this is purely because I’m Asian.' For me, that really opened my eyes up to the reality of this world."
Lin, still an international icon with 5.85 million Twitter followers, joined the Toronto Raptors after his contract was bought out by the Atlanta Hawks. In his debut for the Raptors, Lin scored eight points and played 25 minutes. Lin is currently averaging 10.7 points and 3.6 assists for the season.