Sunday, February 10, 2013
Woody on Shump trade: 'Just rumors'
By Jared Zwerling
The big news on Saturday was the report of a trade possibility involving Iman Shumpert to the Suns, but sources told ESPNNewYork.com that it was "unlikely."
On Sunday, Mike Woodson downplayed the news as well.
"Those are just trade rumors," he said.
Reportedly, the Suns contacted the Knicks to say they were interested in Shumpert and would be willing to offer Jared Dudley and a draft pick. While Dudley is a better shooter, Woodson is focused on Shumpert's defensive potential. In fact, he made a big adjustment on Sunday putting Shumpert on Chris Paul to start the game. Previously, Shumpert was assigned to the shooting guard or small forward, but the Knicks have struggled mightily guarding pick-and-rolls.
"We've got a lot of faith in him," Woodson said. "Again, his lateral movement is not where I think it should be and his timing is off a little bit, and that's expected. I mean, we're not playing him big minutes because he's somewhat still on restricted minutes as well. So we're going to continue to nurse him and bring him along slowly, and he'll be fine. When it counts, he'll be there I think."
Woodson said when Shumpert's name made headlines this weekend, one of his daughters was alarmed.
"My daughter jumped me last night about the trade rumor," he said. "She called me and told me, 'Daddy, you can't trade him.' They all went to Georgia Tech together. Iman's going to be right here with me."
SHEED UPDATE:Rasheed Wallace appeared to be moving around a little better before the Clippers game, taking some shots. But it will all come down to how he performs in practice after the All-Star break.
"Contact and getting him back running will be the next phase," Woodson said. "I'm not just going to throw him back in the mix. He's going to have to show me he can run up and down, and do some things for us in practice before I actually put him back in the game."
A source close to the Knicks said that the team is going to first gauge Wallace's health after the break, and if things aren't looking good, they'll weigh the available big-man field. Currently, Kenyon Martin, Louis Amundson and Henry Sims, who plays for the Knicks' D-League team, the Erie Bayhawks, are available.