Another one bites the dust. That pretty much sums up what has happened to The Knicks’ guard depth during the playoffs.
First it was Iman Shumpert. The defensive juggernaut who was supposed to contain Dwyane Wade in this series. Instead he ended up tearing his ACL in Game 1. That injury forced Landry Fields back into the starting line-up, a move that offensively handicaps the team.
In the unbelievable Game 4, The Knicks lost another key guard. Baron Davis collapsed under his right knee on a fast break in the middle of a 10-0 run. An MRI revealed a partially torn patella tendon, and fully torn ACL/MCL. This sort of injury for a player of B-Diddy’s age and history may be career ending.
The hole at point guard created options. Let Mike Bibby start or try to see what the recovering savior, Jeremy Lin, can do.
It appears we no longer have these options, because Jeremy Lin has been ruled out of Game 5, and potentially for the rest of the series. Mike Woodson said that, “he’s just not physically ready to play.”
It was Lin who originally put this team back into playoff contention in February with his spectacular run leading to an eight game winning streak (a little thing called Linsanity). Then ‘Melo and STAT returned, and all things turned to crap. We all know how that story ended, (RIP Mike D’antoni).
Lin went down with a sore knee that led to an MRI that revealed a torn meniscus in his knee in March. He had surgery, and was supposed to be able to return in the second round of the playoffs. As I am sure you are well aware, it does not look likely that The Knicks will be able to make it to the second round, so we may need to wait for Linsanity part II until next season.
Without Jeremy Lin or Baron Davis running the point it will be turned over (no pun intended) to Mike Bibby. Bibby has been playing better as of late, and seems to have found his shooting touch. The main issue is that he cannot provide 30-40 minutes of playing time.
Who will be our second string point guard? I highly doubt that Coach Woodson would hand the reins over to Toney Douglas. He has struggled all year, and could ruin our chances in Game 5. The most logical answer is that J.R. Smith and Carmelo Anthony will have to play out of position in order to handle the ball.
Carmelo we can trust, but J.R. Smith has been less than stellar with his ball handling this season. Also, they are both guilty of occasionally taking the more difficult shot in lieu of passing to a teammate.
The Knicks have been dealt a bad hand when it comes to injuries, but they cannot make excuses. The Knicks can pull off a miracle this week, and it starts with defending Lebron James and Dwyane Wade. They don’t need Jeremy Lin in order to do that, and they don’t need him to make game 5 competitive.