Haute Exclusive: Shaq dishes on NYC’s LINsanity and why he is Jumping on the Bandwagon

NYC has found a new hero in Knicks rising superstar Jeremy Lin. Completely shining in the absence of Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire, Lin emerged as the one to lead the Knicks to a possible NBA championship.

And there’s nothing better than the admiration of your peers–as such, basketball superstar Shaquille O’Neal announced The Original SoupMan (in which he is an investor, partner and spokesperson) has renamed its Lentil Soup as LINtil Soup for the remainder of the NBA Season.

While having a nod in the form of soup is great and allows New Yorkers a tangible dose of LINsanity (literally) Shaquille O’Neal also recently added Lin to the NBA All-Star Game 2012 Rising Star Challenge – set to air this weekend.

We caught up with Shaq to weigh in on both the soup and the All-Star Game: “I’m very excited to rename The Original SoupMan’s Lentil Soup “LINtil Soup” for the remainder of the NBA season to honor Jeremy Lin’s recent achievements for the NY Knicks and to celebrate his being a part of my team in Friday’s upcoming NBA Rising Stars Challenge,” he gushed.

“NYC is full of great basketball fans.  They have been through the ups and downs with the team and now with Lin, Melo, Stoudemire and the rest of the guys. They have a true team to support,” Shaq said when I asked him exactly why he thinks NYC is breaking out in LINsanity. And what exactly makes Jeremy Lin so appealing, I wanted to know.

“I think it is a little of both, the numbers he has put up over the past few weeks are unheard of especially coming from a guy that was at the end of the bench.  At the same token, the way he has embraced it all by being truly humble speaks volumes about who he is as a person,” said Shaq.  He went on to explain why he jumped onto the Lin bandwagon, “His underdog story line and who he is as a person.  Most people didn’t even know he was in the league. The way he has step up and taken over, has the world talking about LIN!”

Looks like Shaq has given an official LINdorsement.

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