By Jim Baumbach
Sweaty and out of breath after another full-court scrimmage, Amar’e Stoudemire stood off to the side of the Knicks’ practice court Monday and proclaimed himself healthy enough to take part in the regular-season opener Wednesday night.
“Yeah, absolutely,” he said.
That seemed like a long shot when the Knicks opened training camp, especially considering that Stoudemire revealed on the first day of practice that he had yet another knee surgery during the summer, his third in less than a year.
The Knicks have stressed the importance of taking it slowly with their brittle big man, but Stoudemire has since made it through all of the hurdles necessary to be on the floor Wednesday night against the Bucks at Madison Square Garden and begin his fourth season with the Knicks.
The final obstacle for Stoudemire came Friday night in the form of his first (and only) preseason game, and he said he emerged from that experience with only the normal soreness for this time of year, the best news possible.
So he was back at it Monday, banging bodies with other Knicks bigs under the basket during a spirited scrimmage.
“This is like training camp for me at this point,” Stoudemire said afterward. “Just continue to get in shape, continue to get my rhythm back. The last preseason game was a great indication for how I’m feeling.”
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