GREENBURGH, N.Y. —
Stoudemire could become an option to get big man minutes later in the series if he’s cleared to return from right knee surgery. He took part in 3-on-3 scrimmages Monday, looking winded but expecting to practice Thursday and be in uniform Saturday.
“Game 1 was tough for us, but we’re going to retaliate in Game 2 and see how that goes, and then from that game we’ll see what type of adjustments we need to make. And then if I’m able to play, then I will,” Stoudemire said.
The Knicks said most of their problems stemmed from being outworked, but they’ve got other issues. Hibbert (14 points, 8 rebounds, 5 blocks) dominated his matchup with Tyson Chandler (4 points, 3 rebounds, 2 blocks, 6 fouls), and Sixth Man of the Year J.R. Smith continued his shooting woes by going 4 of 15.
“I thought both teams played extremely physical. It’s going to be that kind of series,” Pacers coach Frank Vogel said. “I don’t think we’ve won that physicality battle or anything like that. I think they played extremely hard and physical, and so did we.”
With the Knicks unable to hit from the perimeter, they were forced to drive at Hibbert and other big defenders, which plays into the Pacers’ hands. But Anthony said he’ll keep doing it, insisting again the Knicks’ effort was more of a problem than the Pacers’ execution.
“For the most part, everything came down to effort yesterday,” he said. “In our minds, we cannot get outworked like we did yesterday and that will be the adjustment.”
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