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Lin plans to return for start of playoffs… if Knicks make it

Apr 7, 2012, 10:42 AM EDT

New York Knicks interim head coach Mike Woodson gives instructions to players during their NBA basketball game against the Portland Trail Blazers in New York Reuters

The New York Knicks are going to have to get into the playoffs without Jeremy Lin, but once there they might get him back a little sooner than expected.

While the official timetable has Lin returning in the second round, he is targeting the first round, reports the New York Post. He has surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his knee.

But for Lin to get back it’s going to take Toney Douglas and the gimpy body of Baron Davis to fill his role and get the Knicks into the playoffs. What it’s really going to take is a whole lot of Carmelo Anthony playing his best.

This week will go a long way toward deciding what happens — the Knicks have a home-and-home with the Chicago Bulls then a Wednesday showdown with the Milwaukee Bucks.

As of Saturday morning, the Knicks are in the eighth and final playoff spot in the East, 1.5 games ahead of the nine-seed Bucks (and also 1.5 games behind the struggling seven-seed Sixers). Go 0-3 through the Bulls/Bucks stretch and the Knicks could be on the outside looking in at the playoffs. After that stretch the Knicks will have seven games left, four of those against playoff teams.

The Knicks started 8-1 under interim coach Mike Woodson but have come back to reality since then going 2-2. They picked up a key win Thursday when an Orlando team with far more problems than New York showed up and went through the motions. The Knicks will take it.

The Bulls will have Derrick Rose back this weekend (and have been beating teams anyway, they are 15-7 without the league MVP). The Wednesday showdown with the Bucks will be the biggest game of the season up to that point.

Read the New York Post story and you realize Toney Douglas is a good guy. He talks about Lin stealing his job as the starting point guard in New York without a hint of jealousy. But being a good guy won’t matter on the court, and the Knicks are going to need a lot of good play from him if Lin is going to get the chance to steal his Douglas’ job again.

  1. pbanach01 - Apr 7, 2012 at 12:41 PM

    If TD can play within his role he will be fine. He is a proven scorer but just not a pure point guard. It is a lot better then having Bibby on the floor and Douglas had a nice stat line against Orlando so I think he will be alright. Home and home against Chicago is tough though the Knicks need one of those games.

    • optimus3 - Apr 7, 2012 at 5:05 PM

      TD is a bust – even if he had been drafted in the second round, he’d be a bust.

      His ‘role’ is on the bench and that’s where he belongs. It took the inept NY Knicks over 2 years to figure out how terrible he is.

      Why is he a bust? He has absolutely no court vision and can’t defend for his life. Did you see him make an attempt to guard Rondo last year in the playoffs? He gets burned left and right; that’s if he’s not crying about his shoulder.

      Proven scorer? The only thing he’s proven is shooting at a mid-30% rate over the last 2 years.

      If the Knicks were half as competent as an average NBA team, he would have been in the D-league a long time ago.

      • zackd2 - Apr 8, 2012 at 11:57 AM

        “Proven scorer? The only thing he’s proven is shooting at a mid-30% rate over the last 2 years. ”

        Over the last two years his FG% is 39.3 and 34.3 for 3P%.
        Last year it was 41.6 and 37.3, year before it was 45.8 and 38.9
        So, it’s not mid-30s over the last 2 years. It’s low 30s this year and low 40s last year.

        “that’s if he’s not crying about his shoulder.”
        He had offseason surgery to repair a tear in his labrum and had a timetable of 4 months for recovery. Yet you try to call him out for complaining about his shoulder?

  2. dysraw1 - Apr 7, 2012 at 12:45 PM

    make sure that knee is right dude you don’t want constantly have to deal with the problem, now about Tony Douglas this is his third campaign i don’t get what happen. he seem plenty capable in the past an i figured with STAT & Melo it would be a breeze its a very simple game i thought TD. would have it together by now.

    • zackd2 - Apr 8, 2012 at 1:37 PM

      No professional sport is a “very simple game”

  3. darealrandolph - Apr 7, 2012 at 12:47 PM

    get better Lin we knicks fans and the team need u in the playoffs to make our run for the championship. go Knicks

  4. gmsingh - Apr 8, 2012 at 8:59 AM

    I hope he does–it will be interesting see how much Melo’s point totals go down after that.

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