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Trade must be 'tough' for J. Lin says Rockets point guard Patrick Beverley

TAIPEI -- Houston Rockets point guard Patrick Beverley said Saturday in Taipei that it must be a tough day for Taiwanese American NBA star Jeremy Lin, who has been traded to the Los Angeles Lakers.

“You know it's tough. It's a tough day for him today,” Beverley told reporters after watching a local 3-on-3 youth basketball game sponsored by Taipei-based Cathay Financial Holdings.

“Jeremy Lin and I are like brothers ... It's part of the business you hate to see, you know, your teammate, especially your friend, go,” said Beverley, who turned 26 on Saturday.

Asked if Lin would be able to play well with Kobe Bryant, Beverley said without hesitation: “Yeah, for sure. Jeremy Lin is a great player. He can play with anybody. He'll be fine.”

Beverley said that earlier in the day he had talked with Lin, who was on his way back to Los Angeles. “We may have talked about what we talked about,” he added cryptically.

Lin, who arrived in Beijing on July 7 on an annual tour of China and Taiwan, suspended the visit Saturday and headed back to the United States, presumably to deal with matters regarding his transfer.

The tour organizers said he will return to Taiwan on July 17, one day later than planned.

The 25-year-old was scheduled to attend publicity events and a youth basketball camp on July 19 and 20 in Taiwan with guest coach Steve Novak of the Toronto Raptors, according to Adidas, the sponsor of Lin's one-week visit.

Currently a Houston Rockets point guard, Lin signed a three-year US$25 million contract with the team in 2012 after he shot to fame with the New York Knicks earlier that year in what was dubbed “Linsanity.”

Beverley also said that he is enjoying his second visit to Taiwan so much that he will come back again in the near future.

“You've got the best fans in the world here,” Beverley said to an enthusiastic crowd of some 200 people before watching a local 3-on-3 youth basketball game sponsored by Taipei-based Cathay Financial Holdings.

The organizers also presented a surprise birthday cake to Beverley, who turned 26 that day. The 185-cm tall player was thrilled at the gesture and had a piece of the cake almost immediately.

“I'm having a great time here,” Beverley said, adding that he had eaten some “amazing dumplings and fried rice” during his four-day visit.

The NBA star and the New Orleans Pelicans Dance Team were invited to Taiwan to present the championship awards at the finals of the Cathay NBA Youth Madness 3-on-3.

Some 2,000 youth basketball teams participated in the nationwide tournament, which comprised male and female divisions.

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