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Beno Udrih downplays asking to be traded from Knicks


Beno Udrih has been barely serviceable with the Knicks this season, but due to injuries and a lack of other point guard talent available on the roster, the team hasn’t had a choice but to give him 12 starts, and 30 appearances in total where he’s averaged 19.2 minutes per contest.

It isn’t always the numbers that are bad when Udrih is on the floor, but his decision-making when running the offense and his overall court vision are below average by NBA point guard standards.

None of that means, of course, that Udrih has deserved to be the one so often singled out for his miscues by Knicks head coach Mike Woodson, and that, along with a whole host of other drama surrounding New York this season was the likely cause of his reported trade request made earlier this week.

Udrih downplayed that report a couple of days later, saying that remaining with the Knicks is now his preferred option.

From Marc Berman of the New York Post:

“Yeah, that’s my first option,’’ Udrih said. “There’s a lot of options out there for everybody. I’m a Knick. I want to be here. I think the team has more than enough talent to succeed. We just got to get it together and do our job.’’

The Post reported Udrih would be content if nothing happened on the trade front despite a previous report of a trade request.

“I’m a Knick,’’ said Udrih, who won two titles with San Antonio. “I’ve always been professional. I’m going to stay professional. Whatever happens outside the basketball court, it’s not in my power. If something happens, it happens. But right now, I’m a Knick, wearing a Knick uniform, staying in shape.’’

It’s true Udrih has received an unfair share of the blame, but it’s also true he hasn’t been sharp in running the offense when given the chance. The minutes he received in Wednesday’s loss to the Sixers with Pablo Prigioni and Raymond Felton both available reflected this — that number was zero.

It’s also possible that Udrih received a wakeup call from his agent or from someone in the Knicks front office explaining the cold reality that there is no trade market for him at the moment, given his substandard play. The change in tone may have come from the realization that for better or worse, Udrih is likely stuck in New York for the remainder of the season.

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist taken to hospital after shoulder injury

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Solomon Hill
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Preseason is only just getting underway and there’s already a potentially serious injury to report. In the game between the Hornets and Magic on Saturday night, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was taken to the locker room after suffering a right shoulder injury. The Hornets announced that he was then taken to an Orlando-area hospital for follow-up x-rays:

We likely won’t know more about the extent of his injury until tomorrow, but if it was serious, that would be a major loss for the Hornets. Kidd-Gilchrist is their best perimeter defender and an important piece if they hope to compete for a playoff spot this year.

Derrick Rose expected to rejoin Bulls on Wednesday

Derrick Rose
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CHICAGO — Derrick Rose is nearing a return to practice with the Bulls. After undergoing surgery on Wednesday to repair a fractured left orbital suffered in practice on Tuesday, Rose’s recovery is going as expected and he’s expected to rejoin the team on Wednesday.

“The follow-up [exam] went very well,” Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said after practice on Saturday. “They’ve advised him to continue to let that site heal, and they think the best way for him to do that is to stay at home at this time. We plan on him being back on Wednesday morning.”

Rose won’t be able to participate in practice for another week after that — Hoiberg said the previously announced two-week timetable for returning to basketball activities remains on schedule — but with a radically different offense, there’s a lot to learn, and just being around the team to watch practices and learn the new play sets is important.

“We’re going to actually get over there and watch some film with him today,” Hoiberg said. “Because again, like we talked about [Friday], we’ve added new sets, new things, so we’ll get him caught up by a couple of coaches going over and seeing him at his house.”

The two-week timetable puts Rose’s return to basketball activity around next Wednesday, October 14. From there, it will be a matter of getting him back into game shape before Hoiberg is comfortable playing him in games.

Hoiberg said earlier this week that he is optimistic Rose will be able to play when the Bulls kick off the regular season at home on October 27 against the Cleveland Cavaliers.