USA TODAY Sports
Good morning! I have what I believe to be good news for you: Raymond Felton has passed whatever post-scrimmage examinations he went through yesterday and will start at point guard tonight in Philadelphia. Not only that, but Jason Kidd-- who got treatment for back issues yesterday-- will play and start as well. The starting lineup tonight is exactly what I hoped it'd be:
(The Sixers started Holiday/Ivey/Turner/Young/Allen in their last game. Not sure if that'll change, but I don't mind any of those match-ups, and there's plenty of potential to cross-match.) As always, the starting lineup matters little relative to who plays the most minutes (and with whom) and who takes the floor when the Knicks are desperate for a push. That said, if everyone's feeling okay, this group could be a deadlier version of the lineup that dominated offensively early in the season. Plenty of space for the spread pick-and-roll, plenty of space for Melo, and-- with Shump instead of Ronnie Brewer-- the presence of someone who can defend a couple positions, hit the occasional jump shot, and put the ball on the floor/create. Two more tweets:
Mike Woodson says Kidd's back responded well to treatment so he'll play& start, & w Felton back, he hopes to keep Kidd to 20/25 min. #Knicks
Those might seem contradictory, but I think 20-25 minutes (probably more like 23-28, if I had to guess) doesn't count as a "minutes limit" for Kidd, but more of a long-term trend with a full backcourt. It would be foolhardy to keep maxing out Kidd's minutes with the opportunity to save his legs a bit.
Anyway, I'm excited. This is the healthiest the team has been in a while, and it should be fun to watch Woodson experiment with different lineups to establish an ideal rotation. He's got a whole new box of crayons.