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Iman Shumpert: Playing for 2014 Knicks More Frustrating Than Not Playing at All

Jan 11, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Knicks shooting guard Iman Shumpert (21) moves the ball up court during the 2nd quarter of the game against the Philadelphia 76ers at the Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: John Geliebter-USA TODAY Sports
John Geliebter-USA TODAY Sports
Adam FromalNational NBA Featured ColumnistFebruary 22, 2014

What's better—something or nothing? 

It depends on what you're talking about, similar to the question of whether the glass is half full or half empty. As noted comedian Demetri Martin says at 5:14 in this skit, the contents of that glass should determine which is the more optimistic outlook. 

But enough about optimism and twisted philosophical views. We're talking about the New York Knicks

Just a day after Beno Udrih refused to comment on what he'd learned from head coach Mike Woodson, Iman Shumpert burns the franchise once more. He was a little more tactful, but the message is still quite clear. 

The 2-guard's rookie season was cut short during a 2012 playoff game against the Miami Heat, when he tore his ACL on the play you can see below: 

Obviously, the road back is a long and grueling one. It's filled with endless amounts of rehab work, doubts and pain, as well as the mental anguish of watching your teammates compete without you. 

I've never had the misfortune of tearing an ACL (knock on wood), but I've lived with a college roommate who tore his and seen firsthand just how rough it can be. Many of you presumably have as well. 

But even that isn't as bad as this current Knicks season, according to the Georgia Tech product. 

Jan 9, 2014; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks shooting guard Iman Shumpert (21) controls the ball against the Miami Heat during the third quarter of a game at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Shumpert has struggled with his shot throughout the year, and he's been treated with very little patience by the New York management and coaching staff. Woodson uses an incredibly short leash with him, and there's been no consistency in the team's approach to his development. 

Two things have been consistent, though— losing and hearing his name in trade rumors, with the rumored swap, as per Marc Stein of ESPN, between the Knicks and the Denver Nuggets serving as the most prominent example. 

On top of that, he isn't happy with his role on the team, per Marc Berman of the New York Post

"Whatever happens," writes B/R's Jim Cavan, "It’s clear that "Shump" and the Knicks have seen better days." 

Apparently those better days include the recovery period after tearing his ACL. Ouch, in so many more ways than just one. 

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