"..there’s definitely some risks of playing with a strained back. And I’m not sure we want to take that risk right now when we have such a great future ahead of us." – Amare Stoudemire 4/23/11 in NY Times
From reading Howard Beck's piece in Saturday's New York Times, Amare Stoudemire does not sound like a guy who'll be suiting up on Sunday. Quotes like: "we wanted to have a better run in the postseason.." and then: “The future here with the Knicks organization is very bright, and you don’t want to hinder that by doing too much right now on the back,” don't sound too promising.
Now I can certainly understand a guy and his organization not wanting to risk making an injury worse, but isn't this the playoffs? And won't he have roughly 5 months to rest and recover before next season? That is, if the lockout doesn't happen.. Personally, I think this is a giant cop-out. And a slap in the face to his/the team's fans. If you're gonna wuss out and not even try and give it a go, fine. But don't basically announce in the press that you're shutting it down. I don't know, just my opinion-which isn't worth much.
Regardless of who plays for the Knicks on Sunday, the Celtics have a great chance to sweep their 1st-round opponent and give themselves a nice confidence boost. The C's are 1-9 in close out games on the road during the Garnett era. Tip-off at MSG is at 3:30pm.