Tonight, the New York Knicks will welcome the Brooklyn Nets to Madison Square Garden for the first time.
After sitting out games against the Cleveland Cavs and Houston Rockets, Carmelo Anthony will be a game-time decision for tonight’s battle of the boroughs. Melo was on the floor this morning for shoot-around, but he will take the floor before tonight’s game to test out his ankle before making a decision one way or another. I expect to see Melo suit up, but, in the end, this is a ‘meaningless’ game in December. If he’s not 100%, it’s probably not too wise to push it.
Amare Stoudemire was cleared for practice on Monday, and then was assigned to the Knicks’ D-League affiliates, the Erie Bayhawks, where he practiced yesterday. He’s taking the day off, after being sore, but will return to practice on Thursday. After Thursday’s practice, the Knicks will re-assess Stoudemire and decide to either bring him back up to the Knicks or leave him with the Bayhawks to continue his rehab. Earlier in the week, assuming everything went exceedingly well, there were rumbling about Stoudemire making an in-game appearance as soon as Friday or Saturday, but at this time, it’s just wait-and-see. Woodson said, “If he says he’s ready, then I’ll trust him and I’ll play him,” so depending on how Stoudemire feels after practice tomorrow, we’ll know more.
Steve Novak is questionable for tonight’s game with flu-like symptoms. Of course, this could be a huge blow, especially if Melo can’t go. Without Novak and Melo, the Knicks’ front-line options would be depleted severely, as would they’re scoring.
Rasheed Wallace and Marcus Camby are both out for tonight’s game. Wallace was in a walking boot prior to Monday’s game, and Camby is Camby.