Shumpert: 'I'm not cutting my hair'

January, 15, 2013
1/15/13
4:50
PM ET
It's hair to stay.

That's what Iman Shumpert had to say about his high-top fade during an interview Monday on ESPN New York 98.7 FM's "The Michael Kay Show."

Shumpert has sported a classic hairdo during his seven-month rehab following ACL surgery.

Now that he's on the cusp of taking the court, Shumpert has no plans of getting rid of his signature look.

"I'm not cutting my hair," he told Kay and co-host Don LaGreca, with a laugh. "I've had people say it looks stupid. I don't really care what they think -- they don't have to wear it."

Shumpert said Carmelo Anthony asks him to cut it, but he's not going to cave to external pressure.

The second-year guard is expected to make his season debut in London against the Pistons on Thursday, as long as he makes it through Wednesday's practice without an issue.

Shumpert's return comes at a perfect time for the Knicks (24-13), who are 6-8 in their past 14 games and have struggled at times on defense during the stretch.

[+] EnlargeIman Shumpert
Brad Penner/USA TODAY SportsIman Shumpert
Shumpert, a 2011 first-round pick, established himself as one of the top young perimeter defenders last season, so the Knicks hope he can help shore things up on the defensive end.

GOOD TIME TO REST: The Knicks have played 37 games in 72 days. That's a rough schedule for the oldest team in the league. So the trip to London this week is a great opportunity for the team to get some rest, Mike Woodson said Monday.

"It helps tremendously," Woodson said. "Some of these guys are a little beat up. We've just come off three games in four days. That's our schedule. (The London trip) should help us a little bit, give these guys an opportunity to rest a little bit."

The Knicks flew to London on Monday night and did not practice Tuesday. They will have a full practice Wednesday in advance of Thursday's game against Detroit. In all, they will have played just once in a seven-day stretch.

STAT STARTED THE DIET THING: Anthony just finished a 15-day fast. Amar'e Stoudemire has been vegan for the past three months. Stoudemire says even Mike Woodson has gotten into the health craze sweeping the Knicks, getting on a diet himself.

Stoudemire jokingly said Monday that he deserves a little credit for the diet trend in the Knicks' locker room.

"I think everyone knew about my vegan diet and it just kind of spread," Stoudemire said with a smile.

You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Carmelo Anthony
PTS AST STL MIN
27.4 3.1 1.2 38.7
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsC. Anthony 8.1
AssistsP. Prigioni 3.5
StealsI. Shumpert 1.2
BlocksA. Bargnani 1.2