Storyline: Kristaps Porzingis Injury

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Dolan, of course, was referring to Kristaps Porzingis, the 22-year-old wonder child who sustained a torn left ACL on Feb. 6 that ended his season, and whose recovery from surgery will sideline him for an indefinite period of time. “I’ve been told everything from December to him being out for the season, so I don’t know what to expect on that,” Dolan said. “But we can’t just sit on our ass while he’s away. We need to develop a team and then integrate him into it when he comes back.”

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Ian Begley: Kristaps Porzingis was asked if his contract situation – he’s up for an extension this summer – would impact anything regarding his decision to return next season from his ACL injury. He said it would not.

Kristaps Porzingis moved well and without a limp as he walked onto the court Saturday night. It was a good sign for a franchise desperately in need of one. Porzingis, who is nearly two months removed from undergoing surgery to repair a torn left ACL, didn’t seem to be favoring the leg as he made his way to center court at Madison Square Garden. Porzingis said hello as he whisked by reporters. He didn’t stop because someone far more important was waiting. Latvian President Raimonds Vejonis was in attendance on Latvian Heritage Night. Porzingis presented Vejonis a personalized jersey and sneakers before the game. The two shook hands and posed for photos.

Dr. Carlon Colker is bubbling with muscles and with optimism regarding his difficult task in resculpting Kristaps Porzingis for next season. “Despite the talk, ‘The sky is falling, he’ll never be the same,’ that’s a bunch of horse s–t,’’ Colker told The Post. “He’ll be better than ever. He’s going to be blow people away. If you’re around people who know what they’re doing, it’s not the end of the world. It’s the end of the world if you have the wrong people around you.”

Colker is part of an aggressive faction regarding ACL timetables. While the Knicks likely won’t let Porzingis play until around Christmas (the 10-month mark) at the earliest, Colker says he’ll have him ready for opening night. Knicks brass is aware of Porzingis’ relationship with Colker. Porzingis and Colker met late last season to take care of a recurring shoulder ailment. Colker implemented an offseason conditioning plan and visited Porzingis in Latvia for two weeks over the summer.

Ian Begley: Steve Clifford on Jeff Hornacek: “He’s a very good coach. He’s done a good job. You can’t lose (Kristaps) Porzingis and then, to me, start judging the coach.” I understand Clifford’s point re: injuries & think NYK will take that into account when evaluating Hornacek at year’s end

2 months ago via ESPN

Regarding the extension, it’s unclear how Kristaps Porzingis’ injury impacts the timing of the Knicks’ offer. Prior to the ACL tear, the Knicks likely felt comfortable offering Porzingis the extension this summer. Now, they might follow the blueprint the Philadelphia 76ers established with Joel Embiid and construct a contract that is incentivized based on health. It’s also unclear if the bad blood between the organization and Porzingis from the summer of 2017 is still a factor at this point, but the Knicks are optimistic that all parties have moved forward and are on the same page. Porzingis has said that he’ll address his feelings on the extension at the appropriate time but wants to remain in New York. The Knicks still see Porzingis as a franchise cornerstone, despite the injury.

Kristaps Porzingis: First of all I want to thank you for all the love and support. Im attacking my rehab right away. I truly believe that with consistent hard work, patience and positive attitude I’ll come back stronger, better and sharper than ever. Much love ❤️🔶🔷🇱🇻

Pau Gasol: Wishing you lots of strength for a speedy recovery @Kporzee! I am sure you will come back stronger next season #NBAFamily 🙏🏼 Mucho ánimo y fuerza en tu recuperación Kristaps! Estoy seguro que volverás más fuerte y listo para la próxima temporada #NBA

Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek had talked about resting Porzingis on this six-game trip against the Western Conference and cited the possibility of him sitting out one of the two games of the upcoming back-to-back in Denver and Phoenix. Hornacek added Porzingis will hopefully return for Denver. “KP twisted his knee on a blocked shot,’’ Hornacek said. “He was fine, finished practice, woke up was pretty stiff. I don’t know if it’s precaution. He’s got soreness in there. We still have a couple of games on this trip.”
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April 23, 2018 | 9:25 pm UTC Update