New York Knicks, Led by Josh Hart, Gear Up to Advance Without OG Anunoby and Julius Randle

New York Knicks have left behind the nerve-wracking games of the past two days, showcasing a prime example of how they remember OG Anunoby and Julius Randle, who are both sidelined due to injuries. With reports suggesting a higher likelihood of Anunoby returning to the court against Randle, Knicks forward Josh Hart mentioned that it’s not essential for the team to solely focus on the return of key players this season.

Following the defeat to the Thunder on Sunday, where Shai Gilgeous-Alexander nailed a tough game-winning jumper in the final seconds, questions arose about Knicks’ performance without more than one starter.

Hart expressed, “I see it as this is the team we have. I think it’s about how we adjust to it, knowing that guys aren’t coming back, and if they do come back, it’ll be a pleasant surprise.”

It’s reported that Anunoby’s injury tends to flare up when pushing through discomfort to play, hence a cautious approach to his return. He’s been out for two stretches now, one where he missed 18 games, and the current absence spanning seven games.

After New York’s deal with Toronto in late December, which played a significant role in Knicks’ success, bringing him back would be crucial for the team. However, for Randle, it’s reported that besides controlled contact practices, he hasn’t done much, suggesting a longer absence for his return. Dealing with a shoulder injury since January, Randle has been sidelined, and Knicks would rely heavily on their second-leading scorer, not just to finish the regular season but also in the playoffs.

Hart stated, “I’m not into those medical discussions or anything like that, so I don’t know the dirty work. But it’s about us pushing through every game and getting to the end of the season that they’re not coming back, and if they do, it’s a pleasant surprise.”

While it seems Knicks aren’t actively preparing for the return of any of these players, it’s evident that the team is focusing on those currently available. Daily updates on Knicks’ injuries don’t necessarily yield any benefit, particularly with just one game behind Orlando Magic, who hold the fourth spot.

Certainly, bringing back Randle and Anunoby would significantly boost New York’s playoff aspirations. However, the reality is they’re not healthy yet, so making the best of what they have is essential. This means rallying the other players around Brandon Basson to secure some wins towards the end of the season.

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