Monday, February 27, 2012
Barkley: Amare lacks explosiveness
By Ian Begley
Add Charles Barkley to the list of people who think Amare Stoudemire has lacked "pop" in his legs this season.
Listen to the complete interview:
In an interview Monday on ESPN New York 1050's "The Mike Lupica Show," Barkley said Stoudemire hasn't been "explosive" this season. Barkley believes the diminished pop is a result of the microfracture surgery Stoudemire underwent in 2005.
"Amare is not nearly as explosive as he was two or three years ago," Barkley said. "... Those injuries do take their toll."
Stoudemire underwent microfracture surgery on his left knee in late 2005. He had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee in April 2006.
His numbers are down significantly this year.
Through the first 35 games of the season, Stoudemire is averaging 17.5 points per game on 44 percent shooting -- the lowest totals in both categories since his rookie season.
In addition, Stoudemire has shown little explosiveness near the rim -- a career-high 9.6 percent of his shots have been blocked.
Barkley thinks that the micro fracture has robbed Stoudemire of his effectiveness.
The Hall of Famer compared it to the effect the same surgery had on Chris Webber and Penny Hardaway, among others, saying Webber and Hardaway went from being "great players to losing their jumping ability."
Phoenix decided against offering Stoudemire a long-term contract in the summer of 2005. Instead, the Knicks gave Stoudemire $100 million over five seasons.
Barkley said he agreed with Phoenix's decision to let Stoudemire walk.
"That was the concern in Phoenix and I agreed with (the team's decision) not to give him a long term deal," Barkley said.
Due to his knee issues, Stoudemire's contract with the Knicks is uninsured, which presents a major hurdle if the Knicks wish to trade the veteran power forward.