Friday, July 13, 2012
Woodson: Shumpert's 'looking good'
By Jared Zwerling
LAS VEGAS -- Iman Shumpert is in town with the Knicks' summer league team, and while he's not playing due to his knee recovery, Mike Woodson said he's "looking good."
"He's still in his brace and he's moving around awfully well," Woodson said outside UNLV's Cox Pavilion, where the Knicks are holding summer league practices.
"I like to say he's ahead of schedule, but maybe I'm jumping the gun a little bit, too. But he's doing everything that's asked of him in terms of his rehab and hopefully he'll be back out on the floor soon."
Shumpert suffered a torn ACL in his left knee, along with a torn lateral meniscus in the playoffs. Woodson admitted he knows little about torn ACLs and said the Knicks' training and medical staff is making sure his recovery is a gradual one.
"We're not rushing him back," Woodson said. "We've got to make sure that he's physically ready to go, and once he's ready to go, it won't take him long to get back into the thick of things. I mean, he's a tough kid that plays hard and we're going to need that when he gets back."
Woodson couldn't confirm January as a likely return date for Shumpert.
"I couldn't give a time line on him," he said. "I know our doctors are going to do everything they can to make sure that he's right before he steps out on that floor, and that's the way it should be. I don't want him coming back early and then re-injuring himself."
Woodson said that new acquisition James White will be able to fill some of the void on the perimeter defensive end early in the season.
"We liked some of the things that he brought to the table," Woodson said about White. "In terms of being able to defend that two, three position and the fact that he can score a little bit."
There's little doubt that the Knicks need Shumpert on the court if they're going to have a shot at making a deep playoff run. They won't get out of the East without making things difficult for guys like Rajon Rondo, Derrick Rose, Dwyane Wade and Deron Williams. That will be Shumpert's main assignment.