By JIM BAUMBACH, NEWSDAY
In search of more energy from his starting five, Mike Woodson has made no secret that he has contemplated a change in the Knicks’ lineup.
But so far, with each game, the status quo has reigned. “Maybe I’m being a little stubborn with it,” Woodson said.
Against Philadelphia Sunday night, Woodson resisted the urge to start his top offensive option off the bench, J.R. Smith, saying he liked the way the Knicks’ starters matched up with the 76ers.
But Woodson said he still wants to see more activity from his first unit. And he again left open the possibility of changing the unit in the coming days. “I’m just trying to find a burst with the first unit, to come out and jump on a team and they have to call the first timeout,” he said, “and we’re not getting that. I can always toss somebody else in there. That’s not to say that’s going to work either.”
Just four months removed from knee surgery, Amar’e Stoudemire still is restricted to playing no more than 30 minutes a game. Woodson said he still is experimenting with the best way to spread out his minutes.
“I’m just trying to gap it as much as I can in case we need to have him down the stretch,” he said. “I’m trying not to burn him early and then run out of minutes. From a coaching standpoint, it’s tough coaching that way. But from a medical standpoint, we need to protect Amar’e for the long haul.”
Stoudemire had 22 points in 21:40 against the 76ers.
Kenyon Martin was given the locker next to Jason Kidd, his Nets teammate a decade ago. He said he’s so happy and relieved to be back in an NBA locker room that he would have been happy with “a cubby anywhere.” ——
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