OG Anunoby #8 of the New York Knicks dribbles during...

OG Anunoby #8 of the New York Knicks dribbles during the first half against the Toronto Raptors at Madison Square Garden on January 20, 2024. Credit: Getty Images

SAN FRANCISCO — After two games back in the lineup, OG Anunoby returned home to New York and underwent another MRI as his surgically repaired right elbow has flared up and shut him down once again.

Anunoby, who underwent a procedure to remove loose bone fragments on Feb. 8, returned in Portland Thursday, but clearly was showing discomfort. He was not as animated Saturday in Sacramento, but shot just 1-for-8 and was short on all of his jump shots. He was listed as questionable and then Monday morning was ruled out and sent home.

“He’s coming back from surgery. We want to make sure that he’s completely healthy,” Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said. “We knew this was a possibility when you bring a guy back from surgery. If there’s discomfort and stuff and he can’t function the way that we feel he needs to function on the court we’re just going to give him the time that he needs to let it calm down and we’ll go from there.”

The Knicks have one more stop on this road trip in Denver Thursday, but Thibodeau said he most likely will be out for that game, too.

"Most likely,” he said. “He went back, had an MRI that came back clean. So we feel good about that. And then it’s just managing it from there.

“Any time you come back like he did, you go through a game, you could be fine. Then the next day you want to see how you feel the next day. That’s why oftentimes when a guy comes back we always say he went through practice but we want to see how he feels tomorrow. Well, it’s the same thing. He’s coming off surgery, so he played in the game. There’s discomfort. So we’re just going to let it calm down and we’ll go from there.”

Did Anunoby come back too soon from surgery?

“You can’t work backward," Thibodeau said. "There were many steps he had to go through. He met all the markers and he was cleared. This is a possibility whenever you come back from surgery, this is what you’re looking at. And so, we feel good about where he is. Just give him the time that he needs.”

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