The Knicks have a better record than we had any business asking for -- 4-3 after Tuesday's loss in San Antonio -- but rookie forward Danilo Gallinari hasn't been a part of it. Gallinari hasn't played since Halloween, and was inactivated for the Spurs game. Gallinari's back has been a problem since Summer League ... four months ago. Worried, Mike D'Antoni? Howard Beck of the New York Timesfinds out.
"I'm worried about it at this point," D'Antoni said. "We're just going to do what's best for him. He's 20 years old. We'd love for him to play in the next two or three weeks, we'd love for him to play in the next two or three months. But he's got to be 100 percent well."
The Knicks hope more rest and treatment will work, but after four months it seems that candle is burning low. A red-shirt season (for all purposes) isn't the worst thing in the world; Gallinari's young (20) and the Knicks aren't in a make-or-break season. But for a roster starved for talent, the loss of a potentially exciting and versatile piece has to be discouraging.
There's another interesting note regarding the deactivation of Gallinari: instead of dressing a healthy Stephon Marbury (who is traveling with the team), D'Antoni activated Eddy Curry ... who had been ruled out by the medical staff because of knee pain. D'Antoni is taking this Starbury situation very, very seriously.