According to Adrian Wojnarowski, Amar’e Stoudemire will return for his first game of the 2012-13 season on Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden. After having knee surgery during the preseason, Stoudemire will come off the bench no matter what Carmelo Anthony’s status is for the game against the Portland Trail Blazers, according to sources.
Interestingly, the New York Knicks have performed extremely well in Stoudemire’s absence. Since the beginning of the 2011-12 NBA season, the Knicks have had a 22-25 (.468) regular season record when Stoudemire has played. When he has not, they have been 35-14 (.714).
However, Stoudemire started all 47 games that he played in last season. If he indeed comes off the bench on Tuesday, it would be the first time he has done so since November 4, 2006 as a member of the Phoenix Suns. It would break his streak of starting 417 consecutive regular season games that he has played. Maybe his bench role is the key to the Knicks’ further success, or they could just flounder like they have when he has played in the past.