D'Antoni: Shumpert may start on Friday
January, 5, 2012
By Ian Begley
New York Knicks rookie Iman Shumpert may have played his way into the starting lineup.
Mike D'Antoni said on Thursday that he could insert Shumpert into the Knicks' starting five as early as Friday night at Washington.
"I think you do consider it," D'Antoni said. "Now, we'll see if we do it or not. He's obviously going to play a big part one way or the other, and we'll just try to figure out the best way to go."
Shumpert has impressed coaches and veterans with his aggressive play. He is averaging 14.5 points, two assists and 4.5 rebounds in two games. He missed four games with a sprained right MCL but returned Wednesday night against the Bobcats.
The 2011 first-round pick scored 18 points on 6-of-10 shooting, pulled down five rebounds and handed out three assists in the Knicks' 118-110 loss.
He left the game with cramps in both legs but D'Antoni said he would be fine for Friday's game.
D'Antoni left open the possibly of Shumpert playing either position in the backcourt but he would likely start at shooting guard, taking Landry Fields' place in the lineup.