Little by little, the New York Knicks are starting to get a bit healthier, which hopefully is a good sign with the regular season set to begin in only two weeks.
One really good sign was the sight of Amar’e Stoudemire back on the floor. Stoudemire has missed the two first preseason games to this point with a bum knee, but returned to 5-on-5 contact drills yesterday, leaving him a possibility for Friday’s exhibition game against the Toronto Raptors.
STAT started showing off some of his new low-post moves and seems excited about developing chemistry with his new teammates, especially the point guard trio of Raymond Felton, Jason Kidd and Pablo Prigioni.
“It’s going to be a phenomenal year,” Stoudemire told ESPN’s Jared Zwerling. “I mean, those guys are very, very great at creating offense. Having those floor generals out there, with the lineup that we have and the guys we have coming off the bench, we’ve got a pretty solid team.”
In addition to Stoudemire’s return, guard J.R. Smith also returned to the floor after sitting out a couple of days with a sore left ankle.
In other camp news, Ronnie Brewer (knee), Iman Shumpert (knee) and Marcus Camby (calf) remain inactive and Rasheed Wallace (conditioning) still isn’t practicing with the team.
Knicks’ head coach Mike Woodson doesn’t know if Wallace will be ready by November 1, but sounds optimistic about Wallace making some progress.
“Rasheed’s doing fine,” Woodson said. “He’s starting to pick it up a little bit more in terms of getting up and down the floor with his conditioning work. It’s just a matter of time before we get him back.”
In addition to those four, Steve Novak was held out practice. Novak isn’t injured, but did log a lot of minutes in the first two preseason games and Woodson just wanted to give his veteran sharp-shooter a break.
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