“Without a doubt, I’m ready to go,” Stoudemire said in advance of Saturday’s noon tip against the Memphis Grizzles. “I feel great. I have a few days of rest and I feel great.”
On Tuesday, Knicks coach Mike Woodson said Stoudemire would be “out a while” with soreness, which prompted Stoudemire to contradict his coach on Twitter and assert that he was fine.
“We talked afterwards,” Stoudemire said. “I think he thought it was something more, I’m not sure. But again, we cleared it up and everything is great.”
As it turned out, Stoudemire — averaging 7.7 points and 3.6 rebounds in 18 minutes — just missed Wednesday’s win over Milwaukee and is anxious to get back to action.
Prior to the Milwaukee game, Stoudemire played six games in nine days, including two sets of back-to-backs, serious work for a guy on a minutes-restriction who was not supposed to play back-to-backs when the season began.
“It just happened to be two back-to-backs, four games in five nights,” Stoudemire said. “It’s a little bit much going from limited minutes to no back-to-backs to two back-to-backs. so it’s just a little bit, want to be precautious still. We’re still very early in the year. so that’s why I took a day of rest.”
Memphis is without Marc Gasol (knee) but has a big team featuring Zach Randolph. The Knicks are expected to start their big lineup of Beno Udrih, Iman Shumpert, Carmelo Anthony, Andrea Bargnani and Tyson Chandler, with Stoudemire available off the bench.
“We’ll go big and we’ll have Amar’e coming off the bench,” Woodson said. “It helps us.”
Adam Zagoria covers the New York Knicks and Big East hoops for NBA.com and SNY.tv. He also appears as a Big East Basketball Insider on SNY and 1050 ESPN Radio. You can follow him on Twitter and read his blog.