Knicks/Kings postponed

Monday night’s Knicks vs. Kings game has been postponed due to the impending blizzard in New York City.

The game will be played on March 3.

Will Amar’e Stoudemire’s injury lead to retirement?

Amar’e Stoudemire suffered yet another injury Saturday night in the Knicks’ 76-71 loss to Charlotte.

With a brace on his right knee and his left ankle wrapped, not to mention a sort left wrist, Stoudemire admitted his age is catching up with him. Multiple injuries have not only derailed Stoudemire’s fifth season in New York but his entire tenure with the team.

Reports have suggested the forward could be used as trade bait, but Stoudemire isn’t sure if he even wants to be traded. Right now, not only his Knicks future is in doubt, but perhaps his NBA career altogether.

“At that point, I couldn’t do much,” Stoudemire said, via Newsday. “My ankle was throbbing. I felt like it was getting tighter and stiffer. At that point, I knew I couldn’t be beneficial out there.”

“I’m sure it’s going to be a little time for me to get over this ankle sprain and my wrist sprain,” he added. “But we’ll see. I’ll bombard it with rehab the next few days, recover and see how it feels.”

Sam Spiegelman

At 32 in the final year of his contract with the Knicks, Stoudemire is not going to be in Phil Jackson’s plans for 2015-16. That’s as sure of a bet as one can make.

But over the years, dating back to his time in Phoenix, Stoudemire has had multiple surgeries on both knees, and just recently overcame a nine-game stretch in which he was out with a right knee injury.

Though he’s a contributor when he’s on the floor, keeping him there is quite a task, and anything but a given. Clearly, Stoudemire thinks he can be a helpful player, but what team wants to continue to take the chance on the injury ridden 32-year-old with knees as delicate as a play-dough?

Stoudemire is set to add to his season total of 13 missed games due to injury, and there’s no timetable this time around either. Earlier this month, there was a report by ESPN indicating the Knicks were already contemplating  buying his contract out after being sidelined for so long.

Veterans get plenty of chances of be role players in the NBA, but not ones who have become notorious for being hurt. This might be the end of a very roller-coaster-esque career for Stoudemire.

Lance Thomas amazed by Okafor

Carmelo Anthony and Phil Jackson weren’t the only Knicks impressed by Jahlil Okafor’s performance Sunday night at the Garden. Temporary Knicks forward Lance Thomas also sung his praises after Duke’s victory over St. Johns (Post, Jan. 25).

“He can play,’’ Thomas said after the game. “He’s a force in there. He kept his composure [Sunday] and you can only contain him for so long. He doesn’t even know how good he can be.’’

Thomas was impressed as Okafor helped Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski reach 1,000 wins.

“It was amazing to be there,’’ Thomas said. “It was a great game. I got chills seeing how our guys wanted to win it for him and then to see how happy he was.’’


Fisher surprised at struggle to motivate players

Derek Fisher has faced more than enough surprises in his rookie season as the Knicks’ head coach, but perhaps the most surprising to him: how difficult it has been to motivate his players (Post, Jan. 24).

“Probably what jumps out the most is you still have to work pretty hard to motivate and inspire guys at this level,’’ Fisher said in the middle of the team’s first three-game win stream of the season. “Something a guy who came into the league in 1996, that wasn’t required. If you weren’t self-driven and self motivated, you couldn’t get on the floor.”

But Fisher knows it isn’t just up to the players to get themselves fired up, his heart has to be in it to.

“As coach, you still have to find ways to push buttons and get guys excited about playing the game.” said Fisher. “As a player for 18 years, my brain worked that way. It’s one area that continues to evolve — find ways to help my guys be more inspired and more motivated.’’

Melo impressed by Okafor as Duke star helps Coach K get win No. 1,000

Adam Zagoria, Team Reporter

Jahlil Okafor played his first-ever game at Madison Square Garden on Sunday, but Knicks President Phil

NCAA Basketball: Duke at St. JohnJackson and star Carmelo Anthony probably hope it wasn’t his last.

The 6-foot-11 Duke star and projected No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft went for 17 points and 10 rebounds as the No. 5 Blue Devils stormed back from a 10-point deficit in the second half to beat St. John’s, 77-68, before a sellout crowd of 19,812.

“I like him,” Anthony told and several other reporters after Duke closed the game on a 26-7 run after trailing 61-51. “He’s got a great feel for the game and a great touch. He’s a big body for sure down there, he’s a load.”

Okafor said he wasn’t aware during the game that Jackson, Knicks GM Steve Mills and Anthony were in the arena along with many other NBA personnel and 209 media members. To read more of this story, click here

Game Recap: Hornets 76 — Knicks 71

Result: With Carmelo Anthony sitting out the second day of back-to-back road games, the shorthanded Hornets ended the Knicks’ three-game winning streak.

Need to Know: The Hornets outlasted the Knicks on an ugly night for both offenses. Neither team shot more than 36 percent.

Tim Hardaway Jr. led the Knicks with 25 points. He missed a potential game-tying three with 15 seconds left. Cole Aldrich got the offensive rebound (he had 13 overall), but then threw the ball away.

The Hornets outscored the Knicks 24-9 at the free-throw line. At one point the Knicks were 5-for-14 at the line before making their final four attempts.

Brian Roberts, playing in place of Kemba Walker (knee), led Charlotte with 17 points. The Hornets have won nine of 11.

Neither team topped the 37-point third-quarter performance Friday by Golden State’s Klay Thompson in the first half as the Knicks took a 37-36 lead to the locker room.

Amar’e Stoudemire sprained his ankle in the first half, but returned late in the half. He finished with one point on 0-for-5 shooting and four rebounds in 12 minutes.

Anthony had averaged 25.3 points in the previous four games after missing six with a sore left knee.

Walker had averaged 21.9 points in his past seven meetings with the Knicks and scored 28 last month, including the game-winning layup. He was 3-for-14 in Friday’s 129-90 loss at Cleveland.

Two Hornets sustained injuries: Marvin Williams was evaluated for a concussion; Bismack Biyombo had a right knee contusion.

Links: AP recap | Box Score

What’s Next:

Tonight’s Game: Knicks at Hornets

The Knicks are in Charlotte on Saturday to take on the Hornets.

The game is scheduled for 7 p.m. on MSG and ESPN New York.

Lou Amundson, Carmelo Anthony, Jason Smith, Jose Calderon and Langston Galloway are expected to start.

Recent Meetings

January 10, 2015 – The Knicks kept it close after 12 minutes of play but the Hornets pulled away in a one-sided second quarter that saw Charlotte outscore New York 41-13 en route to a dominating 110-82 victory at Madison Square Garden. New York has now lost 15-straight games. The Knicks were paced by Quincy Acy’s team high 18 points over 22 minutes. Tim Hardaway Jr. added 15 points. Kemba Walker posted 28 points and seven rebounds over 28 minutes. PJ Hairston recorded 15 points over 23 minutes.

December 5, 2014 – New York stormed back from 21-points down to take a 102-101 with :40.7 seconds left to play in the final quarter only to see Kemba Walker win the game with a driving layup with :00.6 seconds left to play that propelled the Charlotte Hornets past the New York Knicks 103-102 at Time Warner Cable Arena. Carmelo Anthony led the charge with 32 points on 11-22 shooting over 42 minutes. J.R. Smith (14 points) and Tim Hardaway Jr. (13 points) combined for 27 points off the bench. Gerald Henderson posted 22 points over 31 minutes. Al Jefferson and Lance Stephenson both added 16 points.