Amar'e Stoudemire says he's sure Knicks will return to playoffs

Grrr! Amar'e Stoudemire is full of confidence!  (USATSI)
Grrr! Amar'e Stoudemire is full of confidence! (USATSI)

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The New York Knicks were... what analogy do you want for this season? Choose one: a trainwreck, a dumpster fire, a rotting mess, the "Beverly Hills Cop III" of Knicks teams. They missed the playoffs after winning 57 games last season. They had injuries, but not on par with the Lakers, Pelicans, Nuggets or even Bulls. 

But that won't dampen Amar'e Stoudemire's enthusiasm. STAT says that next season, they'll be back... as long as he's healthy. 

“Not making the playoffs is not an option,” Stoudemire said on Sunday. “That’s [another losing season] not an option for us. We’re definitely looking to make the playoffs every year.

“This year’s been a struggle,” he continued. “But if I return healthy and ready to go, I’m sure we’ll make the playoffs.”

via Amar'e Stoudemire: New York Knicks will 'make playoffs' if healthy - ESPN New York.

Stoudemire averaged 11.9 points and five rebounds this season in 63 games. It was the most he's played since 2011. Amazingly, this was only the second-most ridiculous thing he's said about the Knicks this week. 

“They should have been a little bit higher if you ask me,” Stoudemire said on Sunday. “On paper we might be the best team in the league. We’ve got great players on this team who accomplished so much. We just couldn’t put it together.”

via Amar'e Stoudemire: On paper, Knicks are best in NBA - ESPN New York.

You have to respect Stoudemire's optimism, and he did play well down the stretch for the Knicks this year. But he's not getting any younger and he's had so many knee operations over the past ten years I've lost count. The Knicks could be back in the playoffs, but it's going to take a better team than the one they put on the floor this year. And a lot of that will depend on how much money Carmelo Anthony demands in free agency. 

CBS Sports Writer

Matt Moore's colleagues have been known to describe him as a "maniac" in terms of his approach to covering the NBA, which he has done for CBS Sports since 2010. Moore prides himself on melding reporting,... Full Bio

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