As the grueling schedule of the lockout-shortened 2011-12 NBA season progresses, it is becoming more and more apparent that the Phoenix Suns made the right choice by not re-signing Amare Stoudemire.
After ESPNNewYork.com broke news on Monday morning that an MRI revealed a bulging disk in the 10-year veteran’s lower back, the New York Knicks ruled him out “indefinitely.”
Now, I’ll never wish an injury on someone, especially someone I respect as much as Stoudemire. The way he left the team wasn’t because of a lack of respect. The Suns offered him a similar deal to the Knicks’ offer but with performance-based incentives in the latter years of the contract, as Stoudemire was fairly injury-prone up to that point in his career.
That’s what makes the news of Stoudemire’s latest injury so polarizing. He contributed so much to the Suns franchise in his first eight years in the league and remains a classy player on and off the court, but his continued injuries serve as a sort of validation to the Suns for not biting at the Knicks’ high-priced offer.
Don’t get me wrong. Stoudemire will always be one of my favorite players to don a Phoenix Suns uniform. But, as injuries can often derail a team’s season, I’m glad it’s the Knicks, not the Suns, that have to deal with it.