The worrisome prospect of Amar’e Stoudemire being as rusty as a 1962 Indy race car is not the only issue the Knicks carry into Bankers Life Fieldhouse tonight. The Knicks are hoping three days off between games have helped. Their second-round series against the Pacers, deadlocked at 1, finally resumes with Game 3 as the Knicks try to retake home-court advantage. Game 4 is Tuesday in Indianapolis. There’s plenty of stuff that needs fixing, starting with J.R. Smith’s jump shot. He’s shooting 15-of-57 in his past four games. Jason Kidd has not scored a point in six straight playoffs games, center Tyson Chandler has not shown up at full bore and Carmelo Anthony’s 3-point shot is still under the microscope. Anthony missed 26 of 28 3s before he hit two straight in the fourth quarter during the Knicks’ rousing 30-2 run that led to a series-tying Game 2 victory. Now Stoudemire, who has not played since March 8, likely will be added to this equation. Nobody knows what to expect, including coach Mike Woodson. The last time the Knicks visited Woodson’s home state, in February, the burly Pacers embarrassed them by 34 points, and Stoudemire finished 1-of-5 for seven points. That’s when Stoudemire was sharp. “I don’t want to replay that in my head,” Woodson said of that February night. “I’m thinking positive vibes.” Woodson has said he will give Stoudemire 10 to 15 minutes, though yesterday he seemed to add a qualifier. “He’s followed the first two games of the Indiana series,” Woodson said. “He’s in tune to what we’re trying to do. It’s my job to weigh things out, what he looks like on the floor. I’m not going to risk what we got going. But I am going to play him and see where he is.” Woodson said Stoudemire is “a big piece of what we do.” But for much of this season he has just been a big piece of their salary cap — in the third year of a five-year, $100 million deal. Whether Stoudemire and Anthony, who have not meshed, will share the court tonight is unclear.
Knicks try to bust move with Amar’e on floor
New York Post | May 11