Knicks forward Lance Thomas has undergone arthroscopic surgery to remove loose bodies from his left knee, the team announced today (Twitter link). Thomas, who had the procedure completed on Thursday, will begin rehabbing immediately and will be re-evaluated in four weeks, per the Knicks.
Thomas, 30, has never put up big numbers during his time in New York, but has evolved into an important locker-room presence for the club, earning praise from new head coach David Fizdale for his leadership.
After starting the first five games of the 2018/19 season, Thomas came off the bench over the last couple weeks and had seen his minutes cut back even before being sidelined by his knee injury. For the season, he has posted modest averages of 3.9 PPG and 2.2 RPG in 15.2 minutes per contest, shooting just 34.1% from the field and 29.4% on three-pointers.
With Thomas expected to miss at least a month and the Knicks already prioritizing the development of their younger players, the veteran forward may not have much of a role when he returns. Thomas has a pseudo-expiring contract, since his $7.58MM salary for 2019/20 is non-guaranteed, so it’s possible he becomes a trade candidate before February’s deadline.