Amar’e Stoudemire Makes His Return (VIDEO)
His knee felt “phenomenal” after the game.
A very emotional Amar’e Stoudemire re-joined the New York Knicks after two of rehab following left knee surgery. Unfortunately for STAT, the visiting Portland Trailblazers ruined the evening by taking home a tough 105-101 road win. Per the NY Daily News: “The Knicks (21-10) struggled with their revamped lineup, falling behind by 19 in the first half before their furious rally fell short when Carmelo Anthony missed a three-point try with 15.9 seconds left that would have tied the game. Anthony scored 45 points after sitting out two games with a sore left knee. There were moments late in the fourth quarter when Anthony appeared to be limping, but he clearly didn’t miss a beat despite not playing for seven days. Stoudemire, however, performed like someone who hadn’t appeared in an NBA game since last May and spent the past two months recovering from knee surgery. Stoudemire missed his first five shots, including several bunnies, and was lost defensively. Woodson limited Stoudemire to 17 minutes and kept him on the bench for the final 10. ‘I was nervous,’ said Stoudemire, who came off the bench for the first time since Nov. 4, 2006. ‘My heart was beating fast. I had butterflies in my stomach. I felt like a rookie again.’ [...] Stoudemire scored six points – one layup and two dunks – after being shut out in the first half. He was greeted with a standing ovation upon entering with 3:31 left in the first quarter. ‘I almost shed a tear when I walked on the court,’ said Stoudemire, who had left knee surgery on Oct. 31. ‘It was a phenomenal feeling. It was great to see the fans were patient for me.’ Stoudemire intends to practice on Wednesday and believes it will take ‘five to 10 games’ to return to form. With 51 games left, there is plenty of time and plenty of room for improvement. On Tuesday, Stoudemire and Anthony played 11 minutes and 21 seconds together and the Knicks were outscored by eight. ‘The game seemed to be going 100 miles per hour,’ Stoudemire said. ‘I was a little rusty. My second half was better than my first half and hopefully my second game will be better than my first.’”