Carmelo Anthony has been battling wrist and ankle injuries throughout the beginning of the season. Add on Amar'e's twisted ankle he suffered during shoot around against the Pistons, and the Knicks look in trouble.
To expect either of these guys to play three games back-to-back-to-back isn't even logical. However, with the teams they are playing, they must find somehow, some way to prove that they are contenders.
The Knicks will have to face the raging Bulls home tonight, and then the slumping Celtics. However, the win by the Celtics against the Raptors last night proves they are still a top team in the East for now.
After the Celtics, the Knicks will come back home and face the New Jersey Nets, where they should be able to finish the trip on a good note, unless their star players take the night off due to their staggering injuries.
Beating the Bulls not only helps the Knicks prove they are contenders, but also it proves they should be a high seed in the playoffs and that where they stand now is a joke. Beating the Bulls would turn heads of many and obviously would lead to other "fans" hopping back on the bandwagon. Best of all, Knicks would prove themselves on national television on TNT.
But like the Knicks, the Bulls have had injuries too, and Richard Hamilton and Luol Deng have a great possibility of sitting out tonight's game. Landry Fields has been very good as of late, and I expect big things out of him against the Bulls.
After the Bulls, the Knicks play the Celtics, and those games are thrilling to watch to say the least. In the first game of the season for the NBA, the Knicks beat the Celtics in a very close game; however, they were without Paul Pierce to start the season.
If the Knicks beat the Celtics as well, they would beat their biggest rival twice at home and away, and that would definitely be a confidence builder for the struggling 8-13 Knicks as of now.
As the Nets come to the the Garden, it is hard to predict what the outcome of the game will be, because the Knicks have no idea who will be back or out during that game.
While it is unlikely that Baron Davis will be back, Anthony and Stoudemire could both be sitting out the Nets game due to ankle injuries.
Coach Mike D'Antoni is optimistic about Anthony's injury, but as you can see, he still expects to make the playoffs.
“If we can keep Melo healthy and keep him where he was [Tuesday] night, we’re a better team than what we’ve been doing,’’ D’Antoni said. “Physically he looked good. I think his ankle is a little sore. But the rest definitely did him good. Hopefully that soreness will go away sometime in the middle of June or July.’’
This three-game trip is make or break. Imagine the Knicks lying at 8-16? They would be about done for the season, and coach D'Antoni might get fired. But how about if they win all three games? An 11-13 record isn't so bad after all, and definitely shows they will be competing until the season is over.
These are very huge games for the Knicks. Winning all three games is a tough task, but that needs to be the mindset going into the Bulls game.
Anthony backed up D'Antoni the other day, but that won't matter if he can't get wins. New York needs wins.