With the holidays over the NBA goes back to the hard grind of the regular season. We look at the stories worth watching this week.[caption id="attachment_13460" align="aligncenter" width="625"] Photo Credit: Elsa/Getty Images[/caption] With the festive season now over we look at some intriguing stories from around the NBA.
Amar'e is Back!The big news that Knicks fans may or may not have excited about yesterday was that Amar'e Stoudamire has returned to the court. After a blistering start to the season behind some epic performances by Carmelo Anthony the Knicks must now decide how best to fit Amare into the line up. He has stated that he is fine coming off the bench but for a guy that makes $20mil/season he needs to be more productive than that. Knicks fans will remember the struggles they had last season trying to make it work when both Melo and Amar'e were on the court and I think they will have the same struggles again. With Raymond Felton out for the next month this may end up being a disaster, especially after a losing a winnable game against the Blazers at home yesterday.
Brooklyn StrugglingIt's a good thing that Mikhail Prokhorov is a multi billionaire because not many team owners would be happy with a 16-15 record after spending over $300mil in personnel upgrades over the summer. To make matters worse their star player, Deron Williams, will forever be labelled a coach killer after Avery Johnson was let go last week. Avery of course can't be blamed for Deron's broken jump shot but he can have some of the blame for the Nets dismal offensive sets. The big problem for them this season has been their second half fade outs and if they want to make the playoffs, let alone make an impact then they had better sort themselves out soon. Their opportunity comes this week with games against the Thunder, Wizards and Kings and will go a long way to telling us whether the $300mil was money well spent.
Old Dogs in San AntonioIt happens every year with almost every NBA writer and pundit, "The Spurs are getting old, this is the year they fall". Obviously no one ever tells the Spurs this as they keep on playing at an elite level, even with pension aged players (Duncan, Ginobili, Jackson and Bonner). This season the only press they have received is when Coach Pop decided that a nationally televised game against the reigning champs wasn't important enough to field a full strength squad. Quietly they have played their way to the third best record in the West (and League) and sit only half a game behind the Thunder and Clippers. With a full strength squad playing perfect Coach Pop ball can they keep themselves going and push for another number one seed come season end?
How do you think the Knicks will go with Amare back and will their cross town rivals pick up their game? Post your thoughts in the comments section below.