Amare Stoudemire

Report: Amar’e Stodemire to make season debut Tuesday


Tuesday night we get to see what the Knicks are really going to look like this season… well, except for the part where Raymond Felton is out and Carmelo Anthony is questionable (with a hyperextended knee).

But Amar’e Stoudemire will be back.

That is what Adrian Wojnarowski reports at Yahoo Sports.

After undergoing preseason knee surgery, New York Knicks All-Star forward Amar’e Stoudemire will make his season debut on Tuesday night against the Portland Trail Blazers, a league source told Yahoo! Sports.

Stoudemire will come off the bench for the Knicks at first and maybe for an extended period of time. Anthony is having his best season as a pro playing the four — Stoudemire’s spot — and coach Mike Woodson doesn’t want to mess with that.

But it becomes his and the Knicks challenge that they need to get Stoudemire, Anthony and Tyson Chandler working well together on the court to really reach their potential.

The Knicks could use the boost this would bring, their offense has slipped in the team’s last five games, in part because they are shooting 33.1 percent from three in that time (compared to earlier in the season when they hit better than 40 percent). Having a scorer like Stoudemire will draw defenses down into the paint to stop him, ideally opening up three point shooters for better looks.

We will see. The real tests for the Knicks start Tuesday.

Thabo Sefolosha’s lawyer: White police officer targeted black Hawks forward

Thabo Sefolosha
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NEW YORK (AP) — A lawyer representing a professional basketball player arrested outside a New York City nightclub has told a jury his client was targeted because he’s black.

Attorney Alex Spiro said Tuesday in Manhattan Criminal Court that a white police officer saw a black man in a hoodie when he confronted the Atlanta Hawks’ Thabo Sefolosha on April 8.

Sefolosha was arrested while leaving a Manhattan nightclub following a stabbing. He subsequently suffered a season-ending leg fracture after a confrontation with police.

A prosecutor said in opening statements that Sefolosha called an officer who repeatedly told him and others to leave a “midget.”

Sefolosha pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor obstructing government administration, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest charges. The Swiss citizen declined a plea deal from prosecutors.


DeMar DeRozan says he hates talking about free agency, takes pride in Raptors longevity

DeMar DeRozan
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DeMar DeRozan has a $10,050,000 player option for 2016-17. Given the rapidly escalating salary cap, it’s a practical certainty DeRozan will opt out and get a major raise.

But he says he doesn’t want to talk about it.

DeRozan, via Eric Koreen of the National Post:

“I hate that, honestly,” DeRozan said in a one-on-one interview. “I never speak about it. With me, I’ve always been that one player: I’ve been loyal. I’ve been every single thing you can think of here. I think people don’t understand how much pride I take in playing (in Toronto). A lot of times when I do get asked that, it kind of frustrates me.

“Everyday I wake up, I take pride in being the longest Raptor here. People bring up third or whatever in franchise scoring — there is so much stuff like that.”

This sounds awfully similar to LaMarcus Aldridge, who stated his desire last year to become the great Trail Blazer ever and then signed with the Spurs this summer.

Things change, and the impracticality of an extension ensures DeRozan will hit free agency. I believe he’s devoted to the Raptors right now, but his loyalty might change in the next nine months – especially once he sees contract offers from other suitors.

Toronto’s interest in DeRozan might fluctuate, too. He’s a nice player, but the Raptors haven’t won a playoff series with him despite winning the division the last two years. Depending how this season goes, Masai Ujiri might want to rework the roster significantly next summer, and letting DeRozan walk could create major cap space.

I believe DeRozan wants to return to the Raptors, and I believe they want to keep him. But so much can change between now and when both sides must make that call.