Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Harrellson back, but will he play?
By Ian Begley
Josh Harrellson and Iman Shumpert returned to the lineup Wednesday against Cleveland.
Shumpert should see plenty of time at off guard and small forward in the second unit. Harrellson's situation is a bit more complicated.
Mike D'Antoni has to find a way to get him on the floor at the four spot. He also has to find minutes for Steve Novak and Jared Jeffries.
On Harrelson, D'Antoni said: "He can spread the floor, make three’s, help open the floor up for other people. Now the question is, can we get him on the floor?"
D'Antoni isn't quite sure how he will sort things out with so many Knicks (14) healthy. On Wednesday, Bill Walker (sore elbow) and Jerome Jordan didn't dress.
"We have an answer for everything with the depth," D'Antoni said. "Some nights, some guys will get in. Some nights, some guys might play very few minutes and we’ll have to kind of adjust as we go forward. A lot of it will be how you’re playing."
The coach plans to use a 10-man rotation. It may expand to 11.
It's a departure from the norm for D'Antoni, who usually plays eight or nine guys. But he said he may continue to play 10 or 11 into the playoffs. He's just not sure how he'll spread the minutes out.
For a coach whose team was seven games under .500 earlier this month, that's exactly not a bad problem to have.
""There’s no drop-off," D'Antoni said of the roster. "As a matter of fact I don’t know if my 10th or 11th guy is not better than my third guy. I don’t know that.... So we'll have to wait and see."