Rajon Rondo is wrapping up a trip through the Philippines, Taiwan, and China and has been quite quotable throughout. He made a big splash in the Philippines when he declared that he wanted to be the best point guard in Celtics history. More recently, he made this statement in Hong Kong:
“It's a different season. He's going to be in all the scouting reports. I'm sure he's up for the challenge as well. He's played against the best so he knows.
“I hope he has success with the Rockets, except against the Celtics. We plan on beating the Rockets pretty bad this year and hopefully I have something to do with it. But he is going to compete and I wish him well.”
On the surface, this seems innocent enough. He wishes Jeremy Lin well but states the pretty obvious fact that teams are going to scout Lin a bit more this season. But the part that riled the Asian fans was the fact that Rondo said the Celtics plan to beat the Rockets (and thus Jeremy Lin) pretty bad this year. Lin has a big, and very loyal, following in Taiwan and didn't take kindly to the notion that Rondo wanted to beat him. Well, Rondo had a very successful trip up to this point. Hopefully the Taiwanese fans won't hold it against him for too long.
Can't be too careful with Asians, especially Chinese. They're so sensitive and do not have a very good sense of humor either. Rondo was probably joking when he said what he said, but the Taiwaneese probably took it as a threat and insult to their people.
At least he did not say it about a Koreans. Those cats are psycho when they get mad.
Jeremy Lin is extremely overrated to begin with and against the top tier point guards and teams in the league he looked like shit. Look at him vs. the Miami Heat. Mario Chalmers made him his bitch and he sucks plain and simple.
Really, Jeffrey? You just made a race-wide generalization that Asians are "sensitive and do not have a very good sense of humor"? REALLY? No one thinks that the reaction could simply be the result of a poor translation?
That said, there is something to be said for stereotypes as they typically don't spawn entirely out of nothing. After all, I'm Chinese American and I know kung fu, play ping pong, like taking photographs, and am reasonably good at math. Really.
I agree on two points. One, Lin has been overrated. At first he took teams by surprise, but once they scouted him, they were able to slow him down considerably.
Second, I think what Rondo said did lose something in translation and it may have sounded more offensive to them than it did to us. But then again, I get really touch when people pick on Perk so I can see where they are coming from.
It is a pretty solid generalization that humor across language barriers is difficult at best. Satire, sarcasm, and puns are almost always a fail. the regular rounds of advertising and posted signs that miss the mark by a country mile are a good indicator of the prevalence of miscommunication veering over into unintentional humor.
On the other hand, I would take last year's minimum-salary Lin as Rondo's backup in a heartbeat. Who could have imagined that a true passing and offense-directing point guard would have not meshed with STAT and Melo? On the Celtics, near perfect.