Newsday's Al Iannazzone takes you inside the Knicks.
Amar'e Stoudemire could make season debut tonight
The Knicks are not shooting around this morning. They will have a walk through before tonight’s game against Portland, so whether Carmelo Anthony and/or Amar’e Stoudemire plays won’t be known officially until around 90 minutes before tipoff, give or take.
According to a Yahoo! Sports report, Stoudemire will make his long-awaited season debut following October knee surgery. Stoudemire didn’t talk to the media after practice yesterday. But the reports from Mike Woodson and Carmelo Anthony and others in the gym said Stoudemire looked good.
Stoudemire needs to have confidence in the knee in order to be able to play. After Sunday’s practice, Stoudemire said he felt less than 80 percent healthy, but he believed he could jump to close to 100 percent by game time. He also said he would be willing to play at less than 100 percent, “for the betterment of the team.”
Ultimately, the decision will be Stoudemire’s. If he feels ready, the Knicks will play him. So Game 31 could be Stoudemire’s first game of the season.
Woodson said whenever Stoudemire plays his minutes would be restricted. The Knicks don’t want to push him too hard and risk any re-aggravation or further injury.
Anthony will test his hyperextended left knee before tonight’s game. He said he didn’t have the usual power and strength in his leg yesterday. But he was hoping that would change around game time.
“It still don’t feel right as far as my bounce and having my legs and the power I need,” Anthony said after practice yesterday. “If I don’t have no lift or the power back in my legs I don’t think I’m going to try to do it. But I’ll see.”