The Amar'e Stoudemire dilemma

Opposing scouts, coaches weigh in on whether forward should start or sit

Updated: January 3, 2013, 4:53 PM ET
By Chris Broussard | ESPN the Magazine
Amar'e StoudemireElsa/Getty ImagesCan Amar'e Stoudemire, coming off a long layoff with a knee injury, mesh with the new-look Knicks?

He's baaack!

So now what?

Now that Amar'e Stoudemire has returned to the Knicks, how should coach Mike Woodson handle this delicate situation? Should Stoudemire come off the bench -- not just now while he's returning to form, but long term -- or should he start and, along with Tyson Chandler and Carmelo Anthony, give the Knicks a huge, well-decorated front line?

And what about the endgame? Should the Knicks go small down the stretch, with Anthony at the 4, their best defender in Chandler at the 5 and Stoudemire on the bench?

For a team that has started the season so well, the Knicks sure have a lot of questions. To answer them, we consulted a stellar group of NBA basketball minds -- three assistant coaches and two longtime scouts -- to see how they would handle the sticky Stoudemire situation.

The Eastern Conference assistant coach:


"I think Amar'e has to come off the bench right now. For one, he hasn't been in the mix; he's missed a ton of games and he has to get his game back. But even coming off the bench, he still can play a key role for them. Of the four bigs they have outside of Chandler -- Rasheed Wallace, Marcus Camby, Kurt Thomas and Stoudemire -- I think Stoudemire is the most valuable because of his ability to score. Even though I'd have Amar'e come off the bench long term, I do think he and 'Melo' can excel together. Those two can play together depending on the matchup.


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