TORONTO — Jose Calderon thought he had a few more weeks before he had to worry about trade rumors, but they’ve already started.
The Knicks reportedly have talked with the Atlanta Hawks about the availability of point guard Jeff Teague. It’s no secret that the Knicks want to upgrade that position and are expected to try to do so before the Feb. 18 trade deadline.
“We’ll talk in the next few weeks,” Calderon said. “It’s what it is. I’m used to it. Like I always say, we don’t know what’s going to happen. I’m really happy where I am right now, with the role I have, the way we’re building something here and how the team is playing. But you’re always one call away from something changing.”
Calderon, 34, is more concerned with his health than the rumors. A sore right groin kept him out of Thursday night’s game. Derek Fisher said “it doesn’t seem major or significant,” but it’s a tricky injury, so he also could miss Friday night’s game against Phoenix.
Even when Calderon is healthy, he has trouble keeping younger, quicker guards in front of him. “If they keep comparing, it’s going to be always tough,” he said.
If the Knicks can’t acquire a point guard in the next three weeks, they could pursue Mike Conley Jr., Brandon Jennings or Rajon Rondo in free agency. But Fisher gave Calderon a vote of confidence.
“Jose has been stable and consistent,” he said. “He’s been maligned at times for not being something that others expect him to be, but when you watch the games night in and night out, he’s competing as hard as anybody out there.”
Carmelo on the mend
Carmelo Anthony went through a workout after the shootaround but said the plan was for him to rest his surgically repaired sore left kneeThursday night and try to return Friday night.
“I don’t want to come back and try to deal with a back-to-back situation,” Anthony said. “So I’ll have another day under my belt and hopefully prepare for [Friday night].”
Antetokounmpo to sign 10-day contract
The Knicks will sign forward Thanasis Antetokounmpo to a 10-day contract Friday.
Antetokounmpo, a 2014 second-round pick, has been playing for their D-League team after the Knicks cut him in October. He is averaging 13.4 points and 5.7 rebounds for Westchester.
Said Fisher, “With injuries and limited practice time, it’s important to have guys familiar with who we are and what we do.”
Antetokounmpo will be available for Friday night’s game. The Knicks don’t have to cut anyone because they had an open roster spot.