Nerlens Noel doubtful for Knicks season opener with knee pain


The Knicks in all probability gained’t have their starting center for the opener.

Nerlens Noel reprimaryed Out of type Sunday and was described as “uncertain” for Wednesday’s recreation in the direction of the Celtics by coach Tom Thibodeau.

Taj Gibson, the 36-yr-previous veteran and a Thibodeau favourite, is the pure alternative after starting every preseason recreation.

Mitchell Robinson May even be out there.

“We really feel like We now have good extreme quality depth,” Thibodeau said. “That is An factor of the NBA, You’ve mans out, and that subsequent man Should be studyy, he’s acquired to step in and get the job carried out.”

Noel’s damage is labeled as knee ache However it’s been beneathperformed all preseason. Thibodeau initially said Noel was solely resting when he missed The primary recreation, and the 27-yr-previous later returned to full apply.

However Noel was by no means activated in preseason and apparently the ache hasn’t gone amethod.

“He’s simply acquiredta be affected person and let him work his method by way of it,” Thibodeau said.

Gibson is the group’s previousest participant and has Even been Probably the most reliable center. He turned the starter in final season’s playoffs after accidents to Noel and Robinson.

“I’m straightforward to adapt, even in apply, even in stroll-by way of,” Gibson said “I am going to change from third group, first group, second group, so I simply study The sport. I’m snug. I’ve been having fun with with these mans for A the placeas now. Regardless of The sport throws at me I’m In a place To regulate.”

That isn’t A mannequin new position for Gibson, who has performed beneath Thibodeau For 3 completely different franchises.

“Thibs has On A daily basis had me In a quantity of circumstances,”Gibson said. “He’s On A daily basis studyy me for starting, coming off the bench. He didn’t want me To solely be A man floating. He On A daily basis tprevious me to have my head on a swivel.”

Earlier to Friday’s preseason finale, Robinson, meanthe placeas, hadn’t performed in seven months As a Outcome of of a damaged foot. And although the Knicks denied any problems in Robinson’s prolonged restoration, Gibson acknowledged Sunday that his groupmate suffered a setback Finally.

Robinson was strong in his 27 minutes of preseason but was additionally fatigued and didn’t look studyy for a heavy workload in A daily-season contest.

“He Should be On the market taking contact on and doing That Sort of factor,” Thibodeau said. “And that’s going to take some time, but We truly like the place He is.”

Rookie Jericho Sims Might be utilized at center in a pinch and Thibodeau might go small with a Obi Toppin-Julius Randle frontcourt combo. It was efficient Inside the Friday’s win over the Wizards and works to jolt the offense, but Thibodeau doesn’t Want to sacrifice the rim safety of A regular center.

“I really feel the rim safety Is important, but typically, You must inject extra power, velocity,” Thibodeau said. “So, it’s one factor that I really feel The biggest method, Obi has grown, I really feel It is going to permit us To Do this extra.”

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