Should Amar’e Stoudemire Play More?

We all know how good Amar’e Stoudemire once was, but now he is constantly battling injury and struggling to stay on the floor for long stretches of time. Now he says he is fully healthy and has asked Knicks coach Mike Woodson for more minutes.

Stoudemire was asked about how his minutes limitations would affect the Knicks chances of making the playoffs, his response:

“From a doctor’s standpoint, there hasn’t been limitations since the first week of the season, so we can’t keep saying limitations — that’s a coach’s decision at the end of the day,” Amar’e Stoudemire via ESPNNewYork.

The question now is, should Stoudemire be playing more? Stoudemire has played in 35 of the Knicks 48 games on the year and is averaging 9.3 points and 4.2 rebounds per game. These aren’t mind-blowing stats, but keep in mind he only plays 18.9 minutes per game. Per 48 minutes, Stoudemire averages 23 and 10, and even over 28 minutes he would average 13.7 and 6.2 rebounds. These numbers aren’t that bad, and he also has the fourth highest player efficiency rating on the Knicks (16.5).

Jan 9, 2014; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks power forward Amar

Stoudemire’s per 48 minute averages are pretty good compared to his teammates’ as well, ranking fourth in rebounds and third in points. His 9.3 points are good enough for fifth on the team in only 18.9 minutes, so his production hasn’t been a problem in the minutes he has played. His defense, however, isn’t as good as it used to be.

Stoudemire has also played very well when he actually gets a lot of minutes. In a three game stretch from December 10th-13th, he played 27 minutes in the first game and 30 in the last two. He averaged 15.7 points and 6.3 rebounds on 70 percent shooting from the field in that stretch.

In my opinion, I say why not give the guy a chance with more minutes. He hasn’t been that bad so far this year, and with Andrea Bargnani out and Kenyon Martin constantly battling injuries I think he definitely deserves a shot. Jeremy Tyler has also been playing well in the small amount of minutes he has been getting, so maybe he deserves a shot as well. He averages 21 points and 13 rebounds per 48 minutes and has the second highest player efficiency rating on the team. I think that the Knicks are struggling, so why not try giving these guys more minutes? Maybe it will work out in their favor.


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Knicks Earn Their Sixth Win

It wasn’t pretty, but the New York Knicks pulled out their sixth win of the season as they beat the Chicago Bulls 83-78 tonight at Madison Square Garden. Carmelo Anthony scored 30 points and added 10 rebounds and for assists for the now 6-15 Knicks.

The Knicks took a 46-32 lead into the half and came out firing early in the third quarter as well. With a little under six minutes left in the half, the Knicks took their biggest lead of the game at 64-41, then things started to fall apart. The Bulls went on an extended run of 33-10 to tie the game at 74 midway through the fourth quarter. During that stretch, the Knicks went 4-18 and had 8 turnovers. They also didn’t get to the free throw line.

Amar’e Stoudemire then hit an elbow jumper to give the Knicks a two-point lead, and they ended the game on a 9-4 run. In his first game playing on back-to-back nights this season, Stoudemire added 14 points on 7-11 shooting in 30 minutes.

The Knicks shot 40.8% from the field on the night, but outside of Anthony and Stoudemire, the rest of the team shot 15-42, 35.7 percent. J.R. Smith had another rough night, scoring only 7 points on 2-8 shooting, making his shooting percentage on the season 34.8. Head Coach Mike Woodson benched the reigning Sixth Man of the Year when the score was 74-70 in the fourth, after fouling Kirk Hinrich while the Bulls guard was setting a screen for a shooting Mike Dunleavy.

The Bulls offense wasn’t too great either, shooting just 33.3 percent from the field and they also turned the ball over 22 times. Dunleavy led the team with 20 points on 7-24 shooting. The Bulls were shorthanded again, without Luol Deng and Jimmy Butler, who they both expect to return soon.