The Knicks announced Saturday night prior to their game against Cleveland that Lin recently had an MRI that revealed a slight tear to the meniscus in his left knee. Lin will have a minor surgical procedure that will sideline him for 6 weeks. That means Lin will be unavailable before the beginning of May, when the playoffs will already be underway.
The news is a major blow to the Knicks. After going 8-2 over their previous 10 games, their lead over the Milwaukee Bucks is a slim 1 1/2 games.
“It’s a big blow,” said coach Mike Woodson. According to him, the injury is not considered career threatening. Obviously though, for the Knicks, it is playoff threatening.
Coach Woodson expects Toney Douglas and Mike Bibby to play more in Lin’s absence.
“We did everything we could,” Lin said. “Today was the one-week mark, and this morning I got on the court to see how I feel and the decision was made this morning. I can’t run or cut so it’s pretty clear that I won’t be able to help the team until I get this fixed. It’s a six-week rehab process but I tend to heal quick so hopefully I’ll be able to help the team this season.”
” I got three, four opinions, and it was pretty much all the same thing,” Lin said. “The surgery will take place early next week in New York. This is one of the most simple surgeries you can have.”
Lin’s incredible regular season coined the term “Linsanity” and temporarily saved coach Mike D’Antoni’s job. In 25 starts he averaged 18.2 points, 3.7 rebounds, 7.6 assists, 2.0 steals and 4.7 turnovers.
Lin is unsure when he hurt the knee.
“The confusing part is that there was not one incident that I remember. It was bothering me a little bit, and then it bothered me a little more, and then in the second half of the Detroit game I was feeling discomfort so I went in the locker room to check it out,” he said. “All the players, we put our heart and soul into the season and to not be there at the end when it really matters the most is hard.”