Knicks Opting to Push Amar’e Hard

Adam Zagoria, Team Reporter

Amar’e Stoudemire underwent three knee procedures in a 10-month span and was on a minutes-restriction when the season began, the Knicks treating him like a newborn baby who needed to be coddled.

Yet with his froncourt depleted by injuries to Tyson Chandler (leg) and Kenyon Martin (abdominal strain), Mike Woodson is rolling the dice and using a heavy dose of Stoudemire during this busy month of games.

Stoudemire played for the fourth time in five nights in Saturday’s 111-106 win over the Atlanta Hawks and finished with nine points and five rebounds in 19+ minutes.

amare_stoudemire“It was my decision,” Stoudemire said. “I knew we’re a few guys down. We needed a lift. I was able to give it a go out there.”

“I didn’t really think he was going to play and then I got word that he was going to play,” Woodson said. “After speaking to the medical staff, before we tipped it up, I knew I was going to keep him to about 20 minutes and that was coming from me. It wasn’t coming from Amar’e.”

Woodson was asked before the game if the Knicks were 15-5 instead of 6-16, would he have played Stoudemire in this situation, given his injury history.

“Probably not,” he said.  “That’s a good question. I don’t know. But if he tells me he can go, I’m not forcing the issue.”

In his last five games dating to the 41-point blowout loss at home to the Celtics, Stoudemire has played 21, 27, 30, 30 and 19 minutes.

That’s a far cry from the 10-15 minutes he was playing early in the season.

“We’ve taken baby steps to get him to this point,” Woodson said. “We’ve got to be careful.”

Stoudemire has had his moments for sure. He hit a huge jumper late on Wednesday when the Knicks held on to beat the Chicago Bulls, 83-76. He had gone for double-figures in scoring in four straight games before Saturday.

Martin is “going to be out a little bit,” Woodson said before the game, adding that there was no timeframe on his return.

Chandler is nearing a return sometime this month, which should help the team’s defense immensely.

And so in the meantime, the Knicks are rolling the dice and going with a heavy dose of Amar’e, hoping that disaster doesn’t strike again.


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.




77 comments
nncyel
nncyel

Could someone please explain the mild infatuation with Kyle Lowry? His stats are no better than Felton. Per 36 minutes, Lowry 13.9 ppg, 6.6 apg; Felton 13.9, 6.8. And some want to give up Felton, another player, plus a first rounder to get this guy. Why in heaven's name would you do that?

chuco
chuco

Can we trade for C.J Mcollum from Portland 

chuco
chuco

Thats why we get what we can get waiting for rondo and all those pipe dreams you get Lowry and give the pick up 

chuco
chuco

I don't think we are making any trades 

marvel
marvel

did we trade shump yet??


what's taking so long..


cole3244
cole3244

as long as dolan continues to interfere and meddle with bb decisions failure will be inevitable for the knicks, he not only keeps the fo from making quality moves but his interference drives proven talent away from the franchise.


every time we give up draft picks we push the possible rebuilding further down the road if at all.

orlando_knickfan
orlando_knickfan

Peter may of sheridan hoops may be the dumbest NBA media person alive.

Shump and udrih for Kaman? WHY on earth should the knicks trade their backcourt for a journeyman center like that?

Ridiculous.

KnickelusKnickleby
KnickelusKnickleby

Amare has made himself Tradeable!!! and yet I'm curious to see how far he'll go as a Knick if he continues to play this way without Injury

bittersweet.

tommy2b
tommy2b

he wasnt helping playing 5-10 minutes.  Play him until his knees give out again.

Jimi Billingsley
Jimi Billingsley

Never gave up on Amare. We all dream of a great Knicks story, and he has been part of that dream all along. Had to be. Without his emergence, at $100 million, there is no chance at all. That said, the guards gotta show up, and Tyson ~ plus a surprise contribution (never mind what was expected from the other bigs), was my idea of a possible successful season. (delusional knick fan?)

Knicks_Fanatic
Knicks_Fanatic

After the two debridements, Amar'e should have two fairly strong knees. His original surgery was way back in 2005. That lasted him until last season. If we can get everyone healthy, we will see how Grunwald's "Go Big" roster will play.


C- Chandler

PF-C Amare, Bargnani, K-Mart

SF-PF Melo, MWP

That's what Grunwald envisioned when he put this team together.If we can get the bigs to cover the 4-5 spots with Melo at the 3, we can surely find a guard rotation between Felton, Prigioni, and Udrih at the point and Shump, JR, and TH2 at the SG. Until we see how that will work out, there is really no pressing impetus to blow up this team.

lindro88
lindro88

@nncyel He's a better player.  Stats don't tell the whole story.  He's not worth Hardaway or Shumpert and a 1st rd pick..  The Knicks have a real problem at PG. If Felton is not 100 percent he is basically useless.  PP and Udrih can't hold down that position all season.  If not Lowry, they better find a PG somewhere or this team probably will finish with 35 wins.

rgm891
rgm891

@chuco I understand you want to wait for Rondo, every team's dream is to get him. The Knicks would have to offer a ridiculous deal with picks etc. I don't think the Knicks are ready to do such a deal. We might as well get more competitive this season and trying keeping lowry for a reasonable price around 7-8 million a year.  Lowry/Felton/Prigioni will work out perfectly for our pg situation. Felton playing around 20 mins a night would make him play so much better.  The Knicks should be making deals shedding cap space but also remain competitive and fill our needs to make a run this season. 2015 will come.

knickfan2
knickfan2

How in the world are we going to trade Shump for a first round pick when his trade value is at its lowest?

Marvel
Marvel

@Knicks_Fanatic 

wait wait wait.  .


you telling me the Celtics would pass on Shumpert for this??? 

 not king airball.... nope.. nah..


don't believe it




tommy2b
tommy2b

(sigh)... looks like we're stuck with lowry and ujiri's going to bend us over on the deal.  There is no way we can match that package.  McLemore, etc. plus 2 1st round picks.

rgm891
rgm891

@chuco If we don't at least address our pg needs. This is a lost season.

kenmetskni
kenmetskni

What's your rush? You don't give up a young stud athlete unless its the right deal. Who do you want, Lowry? I like Lowry but he is a rental. You can't give up Shump for a rental. Now if Lowry agreed to sign an extension, that would be different.

tommy2b
tommy2b

@marvel maybe the market for a guy that we're openly trying to get rid of and has stunk it out for most of the season isn't as hot as we'd like to think.

ReneNYK1
ReneNYK1

@OLD_KNICK The Lakers can't even trade their number one this year so they really have nothing we want,Gasol is old been there gone that route before so no thank you.

tommy2b
tommy2b

@OLD_KNICK Amare's doing it.  We can still make a run at it if Chandler comes back healthy and stat keeps it up.

tommy2b
tommy2b

@bockers if you're referring to the trade restriction for players signed/drafted this summer that already expired as of today.

solar_lion
solar_lion

@moneyballI think the restriction makes sense to the extent the team wants to keep him fresh and from breaking down so as to get more play out of him throughout the season. That said he should at least play no less than 20 mins and when there are no back to backs perhaps 28-30 tops. Knicks do need to ride the hot horse and STAT has shown some steam coming off  the bench.

po_diddley
po_diddley

@moneyball It's a realistic restriction based upon his body being able to recover from the surgeries and not be completely burnt out by the playoffs.   If we were  at .500, we wouldn't even be having this conversation.   If we were to give playing time based on salary, Jerome James would have been our starting center for many seasons. 

rgm891
rgm891

@knickfan2 It doesn't seem likely because the Knicks want to pair Shump/Amar'e in a deal. I understand what your saying cause I just mentioned above the knicks should look into maybe getting a first rounder for him. But it seems unlikely with the way he's playing and little teams willing to give up first rounders, unless a star is involved.

tommy2b
tommy2b

it seems he has more value in the real world than on TKB.  We had guys on here proposing Shump + a 1st round pick + cap filler for Rondo... and others saying that's 'too much for someone that's injured'

tommy2b
tommy2b

Nah, he's going to stay.  With what they're giving up to get him they'll give him the max for sure.  He won't turn down that much extra $.

Knicks_Fanatic
Knicks_Fanatic

@bockers 

Then you should be you should be very relieved that James Dolan has once again taken over.

lindro88
lindro88

@chuco @rgm891 Apparently the Knicks can't trade JR until mid January as per his contract.  

rgm891
rgm891

@chuco @rgm891 If I am the Knicks I am definately at least getting rid of STAT right now for sure. It has to be done. They would be stupid not too. Bargnani will be an asset this offseason to trade cause of his expiring deal and even raymond felton. I wouldn't do the Chandler, Smith deal for Gasol it doesn't make sense for us this season and creates a huge hole to fill. It just sheds more cap space. But I would def trade Chandler, Smith if we at least had a better offer.  The Knicks can go in so many different directions. Let's hope this time around they rebuild the right way. They seems to be less likely to get raped in a deal, which is a great start. A pg needs to be added to this roster this year for sure, if we want to get over the hump and remain competitive. Woodson seems here to stay this season.

rgm891
rgm891

@akamarb 100% agreed man. I hope the Knicks are smart. Cause we can actually still be competitive this season with having the future in our mind. They would stupid for not getting rid of stat now.

rgm891
rgm891

@akamarb I am with you on this one. I at least thing we can get a draft pick possibly. At least get something of value, but we aren't offering that great of a deal with shump/amar'e to begin with.

rgm891
rgm891

@akamarb yeah than forget it than. They want Chandler they are smoking that purple haze. 

rgm891
rgm891

@akamarb it's an expiring deal, huge save on cap going forward for us.But I can see why people don't want to do it. Because we pretty much are losing shump for nothing. Just getting a head start in our rebuilding process. It's def worth a look

rgm891
rgm891

@Sandro Guedes @tommy2b Yeah this is really good for the Celtics for sure. I hope the Knicks have half a brain to rebuild the right way for once. Sandro for GM

tommy2b
tommy2b

@Sandro Guedes Yeah it helps for this one year.  Ainge is getting scared with his team winning and Rondo on the verge of coming back.  He needs to get the tanking back on track.

tommy2b
tommy2b

They won't stay weaker for long.  Ainge has no interest in actually picking players with most of those picks.  He wants to use them to pull off trades like getting KG

tommy2b
tommy2b

You underestimate how good this team can be.  JR and Shump are giving us nothing and we have an overgrown SF manning the C right now.  

tommy2b
tommy2b

Win the Atlantic division, win the 1st round and at least put up a tough fight in the 2nd round against Miami or Indiana.