“I’m not going to give up a couple of games just to work guys back in that I don’t know. If it was Raymond [Felton] or Amar’e, sure you do. But you just don’t know . . . We can’t experiment right now.” — Mike D’Antonii on why he won’t play Curry who claims he’s ready.
Right now the Knicks (11-9) are winners. This is the first time they have been two games over .500 since January 2005. The Knicks are riding a three game winning streak overall and a six game road winning streak after beating the Hornets in the Hive. They face very possible wins against the likes of Toronto, Washington and Minnesota before they play a month’s worth of very tough games. Now is not the time to experiement says Mike D’Antoni who is far more interested in maintaining momentum and compiling a winnning record than he is in experimenting with players he doesn’t trust. Eddy Curry says he is ready to contribute. Mike D’Antoni says he and the Knicks are not ready for his contribution.
According to D’Antoni, Eddy has been performing well in practices, but not good enough to convince the coaching staff that he can sustain a high energy level for a long period of time. “I just don’t think he’s ready yet to go up and down continuously. He has to go up and down continuously. He shows spurts of looking good in practice. It’s tough. It’s the old NBA thing: ‘How can I be ready if I don’t play?’ “You’ve got to be ready, but ‘how do I get ready if I don’t play?’ So it’s just tough because there aren’t a lot of practices and there’s not a lot of time,” said D’Antoni.
Many fans have been waiting for Eddy’s return to add some bulk in the front line, but coach D’Antoni is right not to disrupt a winning formula with a high risk move such as throwing Eddy into the rotation. D’Antoni admits it took him nearly a month to put in Shawne Williams although the coach felt he was ready a long time ago. The physical injury to Turiaf and the apparent mental injury facing Anthony Randolph are the only reasons that Williams has gotten a chance to perform after being the last man selected for the roster over Patrick Ewing, Jr. Eddy must now wait for an opportunity that may never come as long as Timofey Mozgov healthy enough to be in the rotation.
It is likely that Eddy can be useful, but right now he would just be in the way. What do you think?