NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – To the relief of Knicks fans everywhere, Iman Shumpert isn’t expected to join the team’s long list of injured players.
Shumpert was in the starting lineup Wednesday with Carmelo Anthony, Kenyon Martin, Raymond Felton and Pablo Prigioni. He sat out after hurting his left knee late in the first half of New York’s 106-94 win over Orlando.
He said he was scared after hearing and feeling a pop, having torn up his knee last spring, but trainers told him it was likely scar tissue. He sat on the bench in uniform and coach Mike Woodson said he could have returned, but kept him out as the Knicks blew it open.
“I took a step to explode and go up to the rim and I felt it pop,” Shumpert said. “Last time I felt it pop, I was out for eight months. I was nervous and more scared than anything.”
Shumpert will be re-evaluated Thursday.
“They said if they needed me I could go back out, but they didn’t need me so I rested,” Shumpert said. “While I was sitting on the bench, I felt fine. … I am fine now. Hopefully it all goes well tomorrow.”
Anthony scored 21 points after missing the previous three games with a knee injury.
“I feel good, I feel healthy,” Anthony said.
The Knicks shot 53 percent and won their second straight after dropping the first four games of their five-game trip. All-Star center Tyson Chandler is expected to miss about a week with a bulging disk, and reserve forwards Amar’e Stoudemire, Rasheed Wallace and Kurt Thomas all could miss the rest of the regular season.
Thomas said he’d had a stress fracture in his foot in 2006 while playing for Phoenix and had learned recently it didn’t completely heal. He gave it a “50-50″ chance that he’d return for the playoffs.
“We’ll see,” said Thomas. “I’ll continue to try to get the swelling out of the foot. We’ll see if I could come back and reduce the pain. It’s 50-50, at least. I think that’s a good number. I still would love to play.”
Woodson said he didn’t expect the Knicks to make any moves to fortify the frontcourt because Wallace and Thomas could be back around the start of the playoffs. And he said he still “absolutely” believes in the Knicks’ decision to load up on older players over the summer, believing the injuries happened because the veterans played more minutes than expected because of injuries to other players.
“I will never back off of that,” Woodson said. “Their minutes weren’t supposed to be directed that way.”
Oh man — do you think the Knicks will be mostly healthy come playoff time? Be heard in the comments…
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