Media Training Lessons From None Other Than Jeremy Lin

jeremy linYou want storytelling? 

How about that Knicks/Mavs game last Sunday? 

After overcoming racism, Ivy League basketball, not being drafted by an NBA team, getting cut by two teams, relegation to the Reno Bighorns, and pestilence in third-world countries, Jeremy Lin is a legit star. 

As you would expect, his story has been chronicled down to the microscopic details. 

The New York Times tracked down his grandmother in Taipei and broke the scoop that she doesn’t watch those game videos that Jeremy sends her. 

But here’s a dimension to the story that hasn’t been touched by Time, USA Today or any of the mainstream media. 

Jeremy offers a lesson to communicators around the world. 

Forget bridging, the technique of taking the reporter’s question and moving from that topic to safer ground. 

His interview with Heather Cox on ABC demonstrates how you can jump straight to the safe ground with the right words and earnest body language. 

Our crack research department transcribed the interview: 

Heather: Yesterday you said that last year you were just trying to fit in, but this year you vowed to play your brand of basketball no matter what. How close are you to that vision? 

Jeremy: I think right now I’m being aggressive and learning a lot from my mistakes. But I think I am trying to play the way I’m supposed to play, which is aggressive and putting pressure on the defense. 

Deftly dodges the grandiose vision thing. 

Heather: How much more weight does this win have knowing it came against one of the best defensive teams in the league and the defending champs? 

Jeremy: We’re just thankful for any win that we can get and obviously this one is a big one just because they’re a great team, defending champions. And we also wanted to come out here and be aggressive and see where we measure up with them and we’re glad we won. 

Spike Lee is glad too. 

Heather: You guys spent a lot of time in the center of the court once this game was finished. What did you guys say each other? 

Jeremy: We’re just going to continue building this chemistry. Obviously, J.R. gave us a lift. We haven’t even practiced with him one time. Novak, I mean, just on fire. And so we’re just trying to build with each other and try to develop that chemistry so we can move forward and continue to win some games. 

Nicely done. 

Parts of his cadence borrow from John Belushi in Animal House, “Neidermeyer, dead.” 

Lest you think Jeremy can do no wrong, his command of language isn’t exactly Harvard-esque. 

Then again, this could be a savvy technique to fit in with the guys. 

You can see the video of Jeremy’s interview with Heather Cox below.


 

 

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