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 3 years ago '04        #10721
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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$42,056 | Props total: 3437 3437
Berman

Knicks brass had plans to sit Iman Shumpert on the eve of the trade deadline in February in New Orleans against the Pelicans, The Post has learned.

The Knicks had a deal in principle with the Clippers in a package for Darren Collison and Matt Barnes and the front office didn’t want to risk injury. The decision to sit Shumpert, however, was scrapped that night. After all, the Knicks desperately needed the game.

The Knicks won the game, but lost the trade. Shumpert sprained the MCL in his left knee — they originally thought it was torn — and the Clippers backed off. Shumpert only missed two weeks.

It was either karma or Zen.

Now Shumpert appears to have a legitimate future with Phil Jackson’s Knicks. According to a league source, Jackson is a fan of Shumpert.

Shumpert is a defensive-minded player who sacrifices his game and doesn’t need to score a lot to have an impact.

“Iman is still part of this,’’ a league source familiar with the Knicks’ thinking told The Post.

Shumpert could be a perfect pupil of the triangle offense. It doesn’t hurt he grew up a big fan of Jackson’s Bulls in Oak Park, Ill.

“I love Phil Jackson,’’ Shumpert said. “Just being a child, seeing him, how he conducted the Bulls. I just love him.’’

Shumpert, a combo guard, is starting to thrive in his new role as an energetic Sixth Man. The Post reported after the trade deadline Shumpert felt uncomfortable as starting small forward in Mike Woodson’s smallball lineup.

Shumpert will be in the final year of his rookie contract next season, earning $2.6 million. If he continues to play like he has recently, he’ll have trade value this summer. But he also could have value on this roster as Jackson revamps. Like a lot of Knicks, he will be on audition in the final 15 games as the Knicks vie for a playoff berth.

“Whatever Phil adds on, I’m sure will be positive for this ballclub,’’ Shumpert said. “I’m happy about it. Anything that will help my game — he’s had success helping players.’’

As a member of the Mavericks, Tyson Chandler ended Jackson’s coaching career with a second-round sweep of the Lakers in 2011 — one of Jackson’s most bitter moments.

Now Chandler said he is anxious to see him help the Knicks.

“I don’t know him personally, I just have all the respect in the world for him, what he’s been able to accomplish,’’ Chandler said. “I’ve been in a series against him, and you can’t say much more than he’s basketball royalty.’’

One reason Jackson is here is to attract free agents when the Knicks have cap space in 2015 and 2106.

“I could definitely see that,’’ Chandler said. “Phil has a way of bringing the best out of players and maximizing talent.’’
 3 years ago '04        #10722
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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$42,056 | Props total: 3437 3437
Hahn

Before the arrival of the vaunted Triangle, there is another value of three that has returned to the #Knicks:

The three-point shot has returned as a weapon for the Knicks.

Last season, if you recall, the Knicks were top 5 in all three three-point shooting categories and it was a big reason for their success. But at the start of this season, the three-ball provided the opposite effect. In the month of November, the Knicks shot 31.6% from downtown, which was the 5th-worst in the NBA.

But since Dec. 1, the Knicks returned as one of the league's top three-point shooting teams. Since the start of December, the Knicks are shooting 38.7% from three-point range, which is second in the NBA to only the San Antonio Spurs (40.3%) in that timeframe.

Including that awful start in November, the Knicks have climbed into the top 10 in three-point shooting on the season, to No. 8 (37.2%).

The success of late can be directly attributed to red hot shooting from beyond the arc. During this six-game winning streak, the Knicks are shooting 43.1% from three.

More notably, five players are shooting better than 40% from three in that span:

Pablo Prigioni 69.2% (9 for 13)
JR Smith 46.2% (18 for 39)
Tim Hardaway Jr. 42.9% (15 for 35)
Raymond Felton 42.9% (6 for 14)
Iman Shumpert 41.7% (5 for 12)

Now here comes the challenge, as the next opponent, the Indiana Pacers, post the third-best three-point defense in the NBA. They hold opponents to 34.2% shooting from downtown.

Though over their last seven games (3-4 record), Indiana's three-point defense has been a more pedestrian 37.7%.

Remember last season the Pacers held the Knicks to 35.3% from three-point range in the second round series of the playoffs. But the Knicks shot poorly from three in the entire postseason (34.3%) and actually worse in the Celtics' series (33.3%).

Wednesday's game is the toughest one in the midst of what is the easiest 12-game stretch of the schedule.
 3 years ago '04        #10723
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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Ian Begley

The Knicks enter the week 3 1/2 games back of Atlanta with 15 games to play. Their path to the postseason isn't an easy one.

Four of their next five games are against teams that are at least 14 games under .500. But nine of their final 10 games are against teams over .500. Eight of 10 are against teams currently in playoff position. Only the Jazz and Suns aren't within the top-eight seeds in their conference, and Phoenix is 10 games over .500.

The fact that they're even in contention for a playoff spot at this point in the season is a testament to Amar'e Stoudemire.

Stoudemire has been a key to the Knicks' six-game streak. The team is 6-1 since Stoudemire was inserted into the starting lineup and his production over that span has been top notch.

He's scoring 22.7 points per 36 minutes since being inserted into the starting lineup, 3.9 more points than his season average.

He's shooting 61 percent from the field over the last seven games, six percent higher than his season average.

And he's pulling down 8.6 rebounds per 36 minutes.

"I work extremely hard so I know once you put the work in the results will eventually happen," Stoudemire said on Saturday. "So that's pretty much what we're seeing now. We're seeing the manifestation of the work I put in."

We're also seeing Stoudemire, Tyson Chandler and Carmelo Anthony play well together.

The Knicks have outscored opponents by an average of 21 points per game in the last seven games when Chandler, Stoudemire and Anthony share the floor together (94 minutes).

On the season, New York is being outscored by eight points per game when its big three shares the floor.

"We've all played with top teams and have been successful so far. So you put guys on the court together and they're going to figure it out," Stoudemire said.

It's taken these three nearly three seasons to do so. Mike Woodson says the key is that all three are healthy.

"We just haven't had them on the floor for a long period of time where they can play minutes and develop chemistry together," Woodson said on Saturday.

Stoudemire's strong play has helped. He's been incredibly effective in the post over the last seven games.

According to Synergy, the Knicks are averaging 1.12 points per play in plays in which Stoudemire shoots in the post or passes out of it during the winning streak. (Stoudemire's post scoring couldn't be isolated to determine the rate when he shares the floor with Anthony and Chandler.)

The emergence of the Chandler-Stoudemire-Anthony trio may be helping the team's outside shooting as well.

The Knicks have shot 46 percent from beyond the arc in the last seven games when Chandler, Stoudemire and Anthony share the floor.

The improved spacing may be helping Anthony as well. During the Knicks' six-game winning streak, he's averaging 1.25 points per play in isolation, per Synergy. (Anthony's isolation scoring couldn't be isolated to determine the rate when he shares the floor with Stoudemire and Chandler.)

Not bad. All of the numbers lead us to our question: Do you believe what you're seeing from the Knicks' big three? Is it sustainable? Or is it a product of their weak schedule?

Up now: The Knicks' fans protest will proceed. The hiring of Phil Jackson hasn't changed their plans.


What's next: The Knicks will practice on Monday. Their next game is on Wednesday against Indiana.

Question: Do you believe what you're seeing from the Knicks' big three? Is it sustainable? Or is it a product of their weak schedule?
 3 years ago '04        #10724
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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Berman

It goes without saying Metta World Peace wishes he stuck it out in New York and had still been a Knick when Phil Jackson rejoins the franchise as president at Tuesday’s Garden press conference.

Instead, the former Ron Artest asked for a buyout following the trade deadline and will be home in Beverly Hills when his former Lakers coach is in New York.

The Queensbridge product played four seasons with the Lakers, two with Jackson, and knows the triangle and Jackson’s Zen-like philosophies by rote. World Peace said Jackson changed him and will change the Knicks’ current philosophy. He said he hasn’t ruled out a return to New York next season, but that’s Jackson’s call now.

“He changed a lot of views on myself,’’ World Peace told The Post Sunday. “One of the hardest things to become is a player who sacrifices. He showed me the benefits of sacrificing. Right before I came to the Lakers, I was averaging 16, 17 shots per game. After that, it was all about sacrifice and my numbers went down. I was the same player, but he showed me the benefits of sacrificing to win a title.’’

World Peace was a key member of the 2009-10 championship Lakers team — Jackson’s 11th title as a coach.

“I know he really enjoys winning,’’ World Peace said. “He enjoys it more than anyone. Some coaches are obsessed about winning, but I truly believe he just enjoys it at a different level than most people. It’s easy to win playing for a guy who actually enjoys winning. He feels it’s something that’s destined to happen.’’

One question coach Mike Woodson doesn’t know yet is how much the Zen Master will impart his principles as president, or will he wait until next training camp when he could have a new coach to mold.

“Phil’s not going to change,’’ said World Peace. “Phil’s going to have fun winning. When Phil gives you a book he’s not just giving you a book. He’s trying to get you locked in. He’s preparing you for a tough playoff. He knows how to push people’s buttons and get people tuned in to the right frequency. When he coaches, he wasn’t hands-on every second. He gave us the leeway to win. It wasn’t pressure. It was leeway.

“I don’t know how he’ll be as president but he’ll give everyone the leeway to win.”

There’s belief Jackson will want to hire a coach who specializes in the triangle. Perhaps he’ll want players used to the triangle such as World Peace.

“It took me a few months to get it,’’ World Peace said. “It’s the energy that’s different. The energy and the rhythm I wasn’t accustomed to. I was used to playing at my own pace. You have to learn to play in spots, take advantage of certain situations and be ready for a big moment. I would only take five shots in some games, 20 in others. Phil showed me the benefit of patience. And I had a lot of memorable games in the playoffs.”

Because of Jackson, World Peace said he started studying Buddhism.

“I totally believe in a calm demeanor, calm spirit and at the same time he wants you to have a warrior mentality,’’ World Peace said. “You can’t walk through a playoff battle or war and be vulnerable. You have to have some type of force. Phil was able to bring force in you and keep you even-keeled. It’s weird. I’ve always been told I had a problem with emotion. But he was able to play with emotion and be relaxed. He taught me that. I got lucky with Phil.’’
 3 years ago '04        #10725
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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Berman

Metta World Peace said he was OK coach Mike Woodson denied him a spot in the rotation, but he wasn’t OK when told to tone it down in the locker room and refrain from taking a leadership role.

That’s when World Peace realized his Knicks stint was over and left the team, asking for a buyout Feb. 22 in Atlanta. World Peace had played the night before in Orlando but knew that was just temporary.

“He had his set rotation and I wasn’t in it,’’ World Peace told The Post by phone from his Beverly Hills home. “I played in Orlando only because [Iman] Shumpert was out. I asked my agent to be professional, respectful, and ask questions, and my agent said, ‘I think it’s best to try to get a buyout and get ready for the next opportunity.’ ”

World Peace had a player option for next season at $1.6 million and got about $250,000 of that figure in the buyout package, according to a source.

“I didn’t mind playing any role, but I didn’t see myself having a role, not even a leadership role,’’ World Peace said. “I was fine with being on the bench, but at times I wanted to help lead. But at times I tried to lead, it was met with resistance. I backed off a little and tried to blend in with the team. I tried to find where I could complement the players but I couldn’t find any room to complement.’’

World Peace said he wants to play two more seasons, then become a coach. He hasn’t ruled out rejoining the Knicks as a free agent next summer since he has experience in the triangle offense with Phil Jackson.
 3 years ago '07        #10726
Funeral James 24 heat pts24
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Darren and Matt Barnes



We need that trade




  16 - 22 STRK: 1 w in a row WIN PCT: 42% 508 (0) 
  Career: | Aug 16: 47-24, Rank #82 | Aug 15: 53-44, Rank #135 | Aug 14: 155-91, Rank #48 | Aug 13: 64-32, Rank #54 | Aug 12: 212-123, Rank #30 | Aug 11: 333-187, Rank #38 | Aug 10: 1090-567, Rank #11 | Aug 09: 2-1, Rank #328 | Aug 08: 3-1, Rank #625 *
 3 years ago '04        #10727
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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$42,056 | Props total: 3437 3437
Ohm Youngmisuk

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Carmelo Anthony said he is willing to make changes to his game if Phil Jackson believes the prolific scorer has to do so to win an NBA title.

Anthony, who is a pending free agent, said the Knicks' big picture "is definitely more attractive" with Jackson's arrival.

"I'm willing to do whatever," Anthony said after practice Monday. "As long as it's gonna put me in a position to win, I'm willing to do whatever. I'm not sold or stuck on my play."

"What I've been able to do these past 10-11 years has gotten me at where I am right now," Anthony continued. "If Phil wants to come in and change that this late in my career, if it's going to help me win a championship, I'm with it."

The Knicks will hold a news conference Tuesday morning to introduce Jackson's arrival to handle basketball decisions for the club. Anthony's status after the season will be Jackson's first major decision.

Anthony says he will opt out of his contract and become a free agent this summer. He can re-sign with the Knicks to a max deal worth $129 million over five years. If he signs with another team, he can do so for four years and $96 million, barring a sign-and-trade.

He said earlier in the season that his priority was to remain in New York, but the Knicks (27-40) have had a rocky season. However, they have won six straight games and are 3½ games out of the eighth playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

"As far as knowing what it takes to win, Phil is the best to ever do it," Anthony said. "So for me to be able to have the opportunity and have him by my side, for him to teach me, you know, because I'm still willing to learn the game of basketball.

"And I haven't won anything [and] he's won a lot. I can learn a lot from him and his system, things that he wants to incorporate here. I'm hoping and praying this all works."

Anthony said he hasn't spoken to Jackson but will attend Tuesday's news conference if he can.

Amar'e Stoudemire also is looking forward to sitting down with Jackson at some point soon.

"From a basketball standpoint, he's a great mind to dissect," Stoudemire said. "And also from a spiritual standpoint, he is known as the Zen guy, so that would be great to sit down and have a great conversation with him."

Coach Mike Woodson said "There's a buzz in the air" with Jackson's arrival. Anthony certainly is excited about the prospect of teaming with Jackson.

"Everybody as an organization, as a city, as a whole, our fans in general as well, everybody's excited to see that," Anthony said. "We are playing good basketball right now too, so it's like a lot of things coming into place right now."

"His résumé is his résumé. You can't change that," he added. "Everybody sees that. Regardless of who you are, what type of player you are, you see a Phil Jackson résumé and you automatically gravitate towards that."
 3 years ago '04        #10728
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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looks like Earl Clark won't be back but Shannon Brown will remain with the Knicks for the rest of the season
 03-20-2014, 01:24 PM         #10729
Kitsch 
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 Born_Loser said:
looks like Earl Clark won't be back but Shannon Brown will remain with the Knicks for the rest of the season
 3 years ago '07        #10730
Funeral James 24 heat pts24
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I liked Earl, him and Shumpert should be more aggressive though..




  16 - 22 STRK: 1 w in a row WIN PCT: 42% 508 (0) 
  Career: | Aug 16: 47-24, Rank #82 | Aug 15: 53-44, Rank #135 | Aug 14: 155-91, Rank #48 | Aug 13: 64-32, Rank #54 | Aug 12: 212-123, Rank #30 | Aug 11: 333-187, Rank #38 | Aug 10: 1090-567, Rank #11 | Aug 09: 2-1, Rank #328 | Aug 08: 3-1, Rank #625 *
 3 years ago '04        #10731
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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$42,056 | Props total: 3437 3437
Jared Zwerling

Phil Jackson might have given New York new life this week, but the one who really brought relevance back to the modern-day Knicks was Amar'e Stoudemire, in the summer of 2010. Who knows where things would've stood today without Stoudemire leading it off? Then came Carmelo Anthony, followed by Tyson Chandler. Overall, three straight playoff appearances.

That was all part of a plan put into motion when Stoudemire and Knicks owner James Dolan first met privately to discuss a deal, as well as future personnel and development, in July 2010. Four years later, it's remarkable in many ways that Stoudemire is still standing tall and talented. During that span, he's had to overcome three knee surgeries—as well as other injuries—and reinvent his game to become more of a low-post threat.

While Stoudemire's massive $21.7 million salary gets most of the national attention—his co-agent, Travis King, admits trade inquires might happen after the season because of the expiring contact in 2015—his consistent productivity in his 12th season is noteworthy. Though the Knicks could still miss the playoffs, he's not the reason. Stoudemire has missed only 16 games this season (72 the two previous) and is shooting 55.2 percent on only 8.1 attempts in 21 minutes per game. He had 21 points in an upset of the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday night, the Knicks' season-high seventh straight win.

Speaking with Bleacher Report over dinner at his New York City penthouse apartment in the West Village this week, Stoudemire reflected on his Knicks signing, the ups and downs of the past four years, his continued faith in the team and goal of winning a title, what's next in New York and much more. With his consent, his insights are presented here from his first-person perspective, edited for clarity and length.

The Arrival

I first came to New York City on July 4, 2010.

That night, I went to James Dolan's house party, and the next day, with my agents Happy Walters and Travis King and the rest of my business team, I met with Mr. Dolan at the Four Seasons hotel. All of the main Knicks personnel were there, too. We sat down and had brunch, and afterward Mr. Dolan and I met alone at the hotel.

It was great to meet with him. We talked about some basketball, and we just had a great time together. We really hit it off very well, and he asked me to come to New York for the max amount. At the time, the Miami Heat were a serious option for me—I met with them first—but they were waiting on LeBron James to make a decision. I didn't want to wait. Also, the plan was for my business team and I to still fly to Chicago to meet with the Bulls, but I told Mr. Dolan in our meeting that I wanted to come to New York. And that was it.

A lot of people were like, "Why would you want to go to New York? There's no winning mentality there." They hadn't been to the playoffs in six years at the time. But the first year coming to New York was really trying to change to a winning mentality. That's why signing with the Knicks is still my biggest highlight in New York.

I was like, "The Knicks are back." I mean, those words were gold to the city of New York, and to follow through with that was even more precious. I think that's why the fans here have such an open heart for me, because there was a time when a winning mentality was much needed and no one wanted to come to New York. It was a forbidden place, and I took the chance to come here and Mr. Dolan took the chance on signing me, so we had a great marriage.

I mean, it wasn't an easy decision—looking at the roster at the time, it wasn't very intriguing—but I was familiar with Mike D'Antoni's system from Phoenix, and I knew he could win with not-so-great talent because the ball moves, everyone gets the ball and he brings out the best in players. So I knew that was a positive for me to come here. My business team and I also knew that Mr. Dolan was going to spend the money to do what he had to do to put a solid roster together, and he worked with Donnie Walsh, one of the top GMs in basketball at the time.

Another intriguing factor about New York was that it's New York City. I wanted to be the face of a franchise and wanted to play in a huge market. New York is the mecca of basketball, playing in the Garden. I also very intrigued with the fashion. It was just everything about New York. I knew that signing with the Knicks came with a lot of expectations, but I was fearless and ready to accept the challenge.

The Sidekick

I also knew that I needed a star teammate, and that's something I talked to Mr. Dolan about when I signed. My ultimate goal my first year in New York was really to set the tone from a winning standpoint, and then to bring in players that were going to help capitalize and build on that. I mentioned a few players to Mr. Dolan who would be fun to play with, and Melo was one of them. Mr. Dolan and I talked about, "Which players in the near future are going to be available?" Then we said, "Let's make the move and try to trade for Melo." That's how things first started with the Knicks going after Carmelo Anthony. That was a decision Dolan pretty much made with helping myself.

Melo and I have always been friends. We've always admired each other's games. My business team and I actually went out to dinner with Melo's friends in L.A. before the whole free-agency process started, and we talked a lot about playing ball together one day. That was definitely a highlight for me to play with him that first season; also breaking that 48-year-old record with the nine consecutive 30-point games. I mean, that was remarkable. Those are probably the two main highlights, and then making the playoffs for the first time in six years was a lot of fun, playing against Boston.

The Setbacks

But then I was hit with a couple of injuries.

Last season was extremely tough. I came back from left knee surgery on New Year's Day, played well and then I got hurt again and needed right knee surgery in March. It was tough because I wanted to do more, I wanted to be myself as a player and really provide for the city and for the state and just for the team, but I couldn't. It was very frustrating, a lot of long nights.

My energy is also not the same when I know if I'm injured because I want to provide more. I can't be at the level that I want to be because I can't show them what I'm talking about. I can't really lead from the bench; I need to be playing. And so it makes me a little more reserved as far as leading and not playing. That's frustrating because I'm a natural-born leader and I love to lead and lead by example, and then show guys and teach them. I love that aspect of the game of basketball.

I happened to get married in December 2012, and that helped me through my difficult time because I could depend on my wife, Alexis, and children to help get me over the hump mentally. My family has always been there and very supportive. When I see my children, I kind of forget about what happened. I've also got my Team STAT. My business team is always optimistic, saying, "Hey, stay focused, keep working." And then when I get my eight hours of sleep, I wake up enthusiastic, ready to train, ready to work. So with building on that consistently, I'm positive about things.

Studying my spirituality helps in that regard. That's why I'm excited to talk to Phil Jackson, big time—spiritually and mentally, and about basketball. I'm a Zen guy. I love the peaceful spiritual element of what Phil brings to the table for sure, and then also the winning mentality. That all ties in.

I'm also constantly reading the Bible. I'm actually working on a college curriculum that ties in Biblical history and lifestyle enhancement improvement, which has already been credit-approved in the state of New York. Overall, I'm always studying. I read all kinds of books—a lot of history books, a lot of different religious books, a lot of books on activists and just special people in history. I read Jackson's book, Eleven Rings, and I've read some of Michael Jordan's books. I mean, anything I can get my hands on, I'll read it. The more you read and study, the smarter you're going to become.

The Recovery

I've had a similar mindset with training to recover from my injuries. The more you train as a player, the better you're going to become. When you're putting in that type of work and you've got that type of understanding, it becomes natural. I love to train. That's why I'm known as one of the hardest workers in the league. I tell my teammates all the time, "I may become a physical trainer when I'm done playing."

I help any of my teammates, like when Iman Shumpert went through his knee procedure in 2012. When guys get hurt within the Knicks, I'm there to school them on a few things. I also called Derrick Rose's agent, Arn Tellem, to relay a message from me to him when he had his second knee surgery last year. I told him, "Stay positive, keep your head up, continue to work. You've just got to be tough, you've just got to stay optimistic, stay positive, because you have a goal in mind as a player."

I think every great player has a goal, a vision, of what they want to be. And when hiccups happen from an injury standpoint, you can't let that take you off track. It may reduce the time of you getting there, but you just can't say, "I can't achieve that any more." My goal is to become a Hall of Famer. I want to keep working and keep training and focus on getting better and being a great teammate and winning, so I can eventually get to that goal. That's what fueled me to keep f!ghting and keep achieving.

My intense training focus first started after my microfracture surgery in 2005. That was the hardest recovery I've ever been through in my life. I actually didn't know what a microfracture was. If I had known what a microfracture was, I would have never gotten that procedure. Going into surgery, it actually wasn't guaranteed that I was going to have a microfracture.

The doctors said, "There's an option between a scope or a microfracture depending on how big the injury is." So I said, "OK." They said, "We're going to go in and see, and if it's a microfracture we're just going to have the procedure." So I wake up and there's a microfracture, so I'm like, "Holy smokes. How long am I out for?" They said, "Six to 12 months." I couldn't walk for like two months after the procedure. No weight bearing and I had a machine that flexed my knee for me. I was like, "Man, this is crazy."

When I went through the recovery, one day I feel great and the next day I'm in excruciating pain. It was just back and forth. I'm hearing, "Stoudemire will never be the same. He will not recover from this injury." They're naming Jamal Mashburn, Penny Hardaway, Chris Webber—all these great players who had this procedure and never returned. And I have a day where I feel like, "Oh, I'm back," and then I feel like, "Oh, can I ever get back?" So I had to work and train and work and train, and I developed a habit of training.

While injuries happen and you just can't control them, you can try to prevent them or recover from them better by exercising and eating a certain way. I was once told, "Look at yourself as a world-class athlete, and once you look at yourself that way, you will physically and mentally fuel yourself as a world-class athlete." That's why my personal chef, Max Hardy, was a good investment with me coming to New York to make sure that I was eating healthy and staying lean. Those things have helped me persevere through my injuries.
 3 years ago '04        #10732
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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The Resurgence

When I was hurt, I think people kind of forgot about my talents and what I have accomplished. But l still stayed optimistic throughout the coaching changes, player changes and management changes. I stayed positive from going from a starter to coming off the bench, to now restricted minutes. I knew that if I continued to work, one day the Knicks would say, "STAT, we need you again." Going into this past summer, I was able to really train and get my body back in top shape and get stronger again.

Now, I've had a successful, injury-free year so far and I'm back in the starting lineup. From the hard work that I put in, I knew it was going to manifest into some positive. I feel like I'm back to my dominant self and I'm still improving, still getting better, still getting stronger. Now, we're on a seven-game winning streak and we've got a chance to make the playoffs. We dug ourselves a hole, but we're f!ghting out of it somewhat, climbing out of the hole, so I feel positive about that.

The entire season, I've been feeling great, and it's just showing now with the consistency of minutes and play. Also, my good starts carry momentum throughout the game. To be honest, I've felt active and explosive all season. My preparation is still the same, my game is still the same, my explosiveness is still there as it was to start the year off. My training regimen was to be explosive and dominant from the start of the season, so that hasn't really changed at all, to be honest with you.

My career in New York has been somewhat of a transition. In my first season, I was a complete player—I had the quick first step and was explosive, was solid from the free-throw line and efficient with the jump shot from the 15-, 17-foot area. Later, I started off working with Hakeem Olajuwon and was becoming just a back-to-the-basket post guy. And that changed. This year, I'm becoming my complete self again, just being an all-around basketball player and not just having one position. Now, I'm able to be a threat in the post and play inside and play outside, and be a stretch-4 for Tyson Chandler or whoever else is at the 5 position.

After I went down with injuries, everyone was saying, "Amar'e can't play with Melo and Tyson." I'm like, "Where are you guys getting this from? We haven't really had a chance to do these things." I'm thinking, "We're all All-Stars. Tyson is the Defensive Player of the Year, Melo is a seven-time All-Star, I'm a six-time All-Star. We've all been successful. We're top players in this league. It doesn't take much. We can figure this thing out. It's not that hard." Now in the fourth year, chasing the playoffs, we're showing that all three of us can play together on the same court. The sky's the limit with that group.

The Team

Right now as a team, we've got to continue to build on what we're doing. The ball is moving, everyone is having fun—we can't let that slip away at all. Everyone is just feeding off that energy of the ball moving and everyone is just freely having fun—and that ignites the defense. When you're having fun offensively and the ball is moving and everyone is scoring and you're high-fiving and you're chest bumping, defensively we're zoned in. We just can't resort back to not moving the ball, not getting involved in the game, players don't know if the ball is going to come to them, stagnant when it does come. That's when shooting percentages are low.

With that said, we don't want Melo to change his game. I mean, he's so dominant at being that player, mixing in with the point guards when he gets the rebound, and the wings fill the lanes and we go. Between Carmelo and myself in our half-court offense, we can create shots. But it's very important for him to stay aggressive and wreak havoc offensively in the one-on-one set. We need that. It's very important, but—as we're doing now—we need to mix in up-tempo, fast breaks, lobs, moving the ball. That creates a synergy that I think no team can match.

Looking ahead for us, health and continuity is the most important thing. We really haven't had a chance to develop a lot of chemistry together. I wonder how many different starting lineups we've had. If we're healthy and we're dominant, then the sky's the limit. You can build around that. I can't say which player we need, which player we don't need. It's not my call, it's not my job right now. My job is to stay healthy and dominate whenever I'm on the basketball court, period. So that's kind of my MO.

As for Melo, I'm not sure what he's going to do this summer. We haven't talked about it. I try to keep that a private conversation. I know he and his family are making a key decision this summer, and we know how great New York is. It's been a tough year for us because we haven't been winning, so I know all that plays a factor. I'm sure he talks with his family all the time about it, so I try not to bring that up. We talk winning right now, we talk about the playoffs and keep getting better. This is a big year for us to try to get in this playoffs, and then this summer is going to be very important, and next year we're going to see what we can do.

I want to be a Knick for life and win multiple championships here. I don't want to go anywhere else, especially with Jackson coming in. He has an incredible legacy; it's probably unmatched. With a leader like that, it can only become a positive output with that type of leadership. He's been around great organizations, from Chicago to L.A., so now joining us with the Knicks, it's great to see. Regarding the Triangle offense, it's funny because I've been hearing that it would be great for me for the past six years. It could be possible that we implement the Triangle offense, and I just can't wait to perfect whatever system we're going to be in. I'm ready to get to work now.

I want to play until I can't walk any more, to be honest with you. I'm only 31 and I just love the game that much. I feel like now I have a good grasp on how to go into the season, and how to manage my time and manage my body a lot better than I have in the past. Even after I'm done playing, I could see myself as the Knicks' a.ssistant GM or director of player personnel. With me being a part owner of the Hapoel Jerusalem basketball team, I've already talked to my business team about working in the Knicks' front office one day.



The Future

Reflecting on the past four years, the first year really stands out. It was all so much excitement that I had never felt before—playing the games and Raymond Felton picking the pick-and-rolls apart and throwing alley-oops, and then the behind-the-back passes and celebrations after the play, and then going out to dinner and having a good time with my teammates and my family and friends. Sometimes after a home win, we'd start off a dinner with four of us at a restaurant where I knew the owner, and by the time dinner was served, we'd be at a table with 20 celebrity actors and actresses.

I mean, it was just incredible, and then we'd do it all over again and all over again. I also went to fashion shows and then Broadway shows. I mean, there was just so much excitement and I want that to continue in New York. I want to get back to those winning ways—to having so much fun, and for the fans. Once we get back to that then we'll be on our way.

I think despite all of the changes we've made through the years, we've happened to make the playoffs every year, which was the goal when I first got here. I think the near future is very bright because we have a great nucleus with Tyson and Carmelo and myself, and now Phil Jackson. Those are all highlights that manifested from me signing here in 2010, when I came here to help the Knicks win. That's why I don't want to leave. I want to be here for the long haul and do whatever it takes to win, so whatever sacrifices I have to make, I will be willing to make them.
 3 years ago '07        #10733
I Am The Truth 1 heat pts
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$5,431 | Props total: 1238 1238
Standing Tall And Talented... my dude
 3 years ago '04        #10734
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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$42,056 | Props total: 3437 3437
just hope im just worrying but i really can't shake the feeling these n*ggas gonna get too c*cky and end up losing to the Sixers
 3 years ago '07        #10735
I Am The Truth 1 heat pts
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$5,431 | Props total: 1238 1238
NOPE! Phil Jack effect...
 3 years ago '07        #10736
Funeral James 24 heat pts24
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$16,467 | Props total: 374 374
Only player to watch is Seth tomorrow hopefully he don't go off and we get another easy win




  16 - 22 STRK: 1 w in a row WIN PCT: 42% 508 (0) 
  Career: | Aug 16: 47-24, Rank #82 | Aug 15: 53-44, Rank #135 | Aug 14: 155-91, Rank #48 | Aug 13: 64-32, Rank #54 | Aug 12: 212-123, Rank #30 | Aug 11: 333-187, Rank #38 | Aug 10: 1090-567, Rank #11 | Aug 09: 2-1, Rank #328 | Aug 08: 3-1, Rank #625 *
 3 years ago '10        #10737
Dextromethorphan 217 heat pts217
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$27,807 | Props total: 12 12
Cute thread.
 3 years ago '05        #10738
DrDeath 17 heat pts17
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$4,124 | Props total: 2340 2340
ATL and CHA lost so hopefully we can get back to work against LA tomorrow
 3 years ago '04        #10739
Born_Loser|M 98 heat pts98
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$42,056 | Props total: 3437 3437
Tyson Chicken won't practice due to personal reasons but is expected to play
 3 years ago '07        #10740
Funeral James 24 heat pts24
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$16,467 | Props total: 374 374
Tired of tyson chandler just watchin people score and the whole team stops moving on offense and just watches the ball handler



I thought we honestly made progress then jack scores 31 a certified bum smh




  16 - 22 STRK: 1 w in a row WIN PCT: 42% 508 (0) 
  Career: | Aug 16: 47-24, Rank #82 | Aug 15: 53-44, Rank #135 | Aug 14: 155-91, Rank #48 | Aug 13: 64-32, Rank #54 | Aug 12: 212-123, Rank #30 | Aug 11: 333-187, Rank #38 | Aug 10: 1090-567, Rank #11 | Aug 09: 2-1, Rank #328 | Aug 08: 3-1, Rank #625 *
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