Carmelo Anthony, Amar'e Stoudemire questionable for Tuesday
GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- The Knicks could open the New Year with the same 10 healthy bodies that played in their final game of 2012, or a familiar face or two could return.
Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire are questionable for Tuesday night's game against the Trail Blazers with knee issues. Each player will decide whether he can play, but Anthony didn't sound optimistic after going through part of practice Monday.
Anthony, who hyperextended his left knee on Christmas Day against the Lakers, said he lacked strength in the leg and didn't have the usual lift in his jump shot.
"It still don't feel right as far as my bounce and having my legs and the power I need," Anthony said. "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."
Anthony, who said he hasn't had an MRI, has missed the last two games. He said he was supposed to do no more than get shots up Monday but "snuck into practice" and went through a controlled scrimmage.
"There's no pain, just weakness in my leg," said Anthony, who noted that he still had "more than 24 hours'' to improve. "I don't feel like I have the full strength that I need right now. So I wanted to go out there and try to get through practice with a little bit of practice and see how it felt."
Stoudemire went through all of practice for the second straight day. It's a positive sign in itself that he was able to participate fully on back-to-back days. It's the first time he has done that since before having surgery on his left knee in October.
Stoudemire didn't speak to the media after practice. But Mike Woodson said he moved well, and the coach kept the door open for Stoudemire to make his season debut Tuesday night.
"It's going to be up to him, based on how he feels," Woodson said. "That's got a lot to do with it. If he comes in and says, 'Hey, my knee is sore from yesterday's work,' then we've got to back off."
After Sunday's practice, Stoudemire said he didn't feel even 80 percent healthy but would "sacrifice my body for the betterment of the team." If Anthony can't play, Stoudemire might feel more pressure to get on the court. But the Knicks won't let him play if he's not confident in his knee.
Woodson said Stoudemire's conditioning and knowledge of some terminology and defensive principles are behind. But he did some extra work at the end of practice to try to catch up.
"We're trying to go over a few things to kind of get him up to [speed]," Woodson said. "It's still going to take a little while for him. That's expected. You can't expect that when he does decide to play that he's going to flow right in and everything's going to happen magically for him, because that's not always the case."
Woodson said Stoudemire will have to improve his conditioning in practice because the plan is "to be cautious" in games and limit his minutes at first.
Anthony is excited just knowing that Stoudemire is close to playing.
"It felt good seeing him back out there, running our offense, getting him back into the flow of things and just playing within the system and everybody's feeling comfortable out there," Anthony said. "He's fitting right in. Right now it's all about him getting his legs underneath of him. When he's ready to come back, our arms are open for him."
Notes & quotes: Tyson Chandler (ankle) and Jason Kidd (recovery day) didn't practice, but Woodson said he expects them to play . . . Rasheed Wallace (acute stress reaction, left foot) didn't practice and is listed as questionable.