Carmelo Anthony appears to be saving himself for Canada. It is unlikely Anthony will test his sprained left ankle Friday at the Garden against the first-place Raptors. It appears he will take one more game off and suit up in Toronto at Air Canada Centre on Saturday when the home-and-home series concludes. The Knicks officially are listing Anthony as questionable after he sat out practice Thursday to rest. He bolted for the locker room at their Tarrytown facility when media was allowed into the gym. Mike Woodson said he was surprised Anthony backed out of the Oklahoma City clash on Christmas an hour before tipoff, claiming to be too sore. Trying to play a back-to-back upon his return would seem risky. Woodson wouldn’t rule him out completely, saying the back-to-back isn’t a factor for the coach. “We’ll see how he is [Friday] and evaluate him,’’ Woodson said. “If he says he’s ready to go, we’ll put him in uniform and play him.’’ The Knicks couldn’t overcome playing without Anthony against the Thunder, losing by 29 points. Woodson started a frontline of Tyson Chandler, Andrea Bargnani and J.R. Smith at small forward. Woodson could replace Smith with Kenyon Martin against the Raptors. Anthony, whose left shoulder has held up well after rehabbing a torn rotator cuff all summer, will likely miss his second game this season as he’s been healthier than his first two Knicks seasons. He missed 15 games last season, including two with a sprained ankle. He played 55 of the 66 games in the lockout-shortened 2011-12 season with various ailments.
Melo in doubt for Raptors’ visit to Garden
New York Post | Dec 27