|Shumpert may be back jamming by Christmas. (Getty Images)|
All signs Saturday suggested that Shumpert's rehabilitation this off-season has gone well. He will still miss the start of the regular season, but it appears Shumpert could possibly return in December if his recovery is ahead of schedule.
Last week, Shumpert said he hoped to play in December, but that he doesn't want to come back too early from his injury.
The Knicks have some depth at the position, with J.R. Smith, Ronnie Brewer and the possiblity of running multiple point guards out in different lineups. But Shumpert gives them an athletic player who's already terrific defensively and can bring a lot of versatility. At the same time, you need to make sure he comes back totally healthy. Luckily, there's a lot better chance of him recovering from the injury now than, say, even 15 years ago.
Getting him back for December will help with the guard's endurance and management of minutes. But if it takes him a few more months, the Knicks can survive. They need him in the playoffs, and more important, for years to come. But it's good to hear he's ahead of schedule.