NEWARK -- Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler are looking forward to Amar'e Stoudemire's return.
"Amar'e is an incredible player, and he's been looking great," Chandler said. "It's just a matter of him getting his timing back. But we obviously know we're a way better team with him than without him."
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Stoudemire remains on schedule to play Friday night in Cleveland. He went through a pregame workout Wednesday night and if there are no issues with his back, he will start against the Cavaliers.
One concern is how he and Anthony will mesh. The Knicks are 28-36, playoffs included, when Anthony and Stoudemire play together. But they're 6-1 under Mike Woodson, who said he's starting Stoudemire instead of bringing him off the bench because he's "got to see if this thing is going to work."
Anthony has flourished being the Knicks' main scoring threat the 13 games Stoudemire has missed with a bulging disc in his back. There will be an adjustment for everyone involved, but Anthony believes it's been blown out proportion.
"I don't think there's anything about a transition or adjustment or anything like that," he said. "I'm pretty sure he'll fit right in. Our biggest thing and his biggest thing is to get him healthy. We're going to need him down the stretch, especially going into the playoffs."
Chandler agrees that the Knicks need Stoudemire, but he believes there will be an adjustment period when he's back.
"You always have a little bit of transition whenever a guy is in and out of the lineup," Chandler said. "Amar'e demands so much respect from other teams. So it's obviously an added bonus, right now the way Melo is going, to have a big-time second option like that is only going to benefit our team."
Davis misses game
Baron Davis missed Wednesday night's game because of a stomach virus. Mike Bibby started in Davis' place. Woodson expects Davis to return Friday night. The Knicks were also without Jared Jeffries (sore right knee).
Around the rim
If the Knicks finish with the seventh seed and face the Heat in the first round, they likely will open Sunday afternoon in Miami . . . The Nets, who are moving to Brooklyn next season, play their final game in New Jersey Monday against Philadelphia. They will honor former players and coaches during a halftime ceremony.