Joakim Noah, who signed a four-year, $72MM deal last offseason, underwent rotator cuff surgery on Wednesday, Al Iannazzone of Newsday relays. Noah was suspended by the league for taking a banned substance at the end of this season. He was able to serve eight of his 20 games since he was deemed healthy enough to play toward the end of the 2016/17 campaign. He’ll serve the remaining 12 games of the suspension once he’s recovered from his left shoulder surgery and ruled healthy enough to play. The Knicks didn’t give a timetable for his return, but coach Jeff Hornacek previously said the rehab process should take approximately five months.
Team president Phil Jackson remains hopeful that Noah can return from his injury and live up to his current contract. “We talked a lot about, ‘Can you get yourself back into this condition? Hamstrings, hamstrings, hamstrings,” Jackson said earlier this month. “‘Eventually it ended up being the knee that was creating ultimately other problems. So we hope going forward – he expresses great dedication in getting back to what he was and who he is as a basketball player. So I have to trust him in that.”
Here’s more from the city that never sleeps:
- Kristaps Porzingis may be frustrated with the Knicks‘ organization, but that doesn’t extend to assistant coach Joshua Longstaff, according to Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News. Longstaff will join Porzingis in Latvia this summer and Bondy hears that the big man wants Longstaff to be an assistant coach for the Latvian National Team. New York previously offered to approve Porzingis’ participation in the European Championships if the Latvian team allowed the assistant to be on its staff.
- Can Jackson and Carmelo Anthony coexist in New York after a season of turmoil? Kobe Bryant believes there’s a chance the two parties can, as Marc Berman of the New York Post relays. “Michael [Jordan] had his rough times with him as well. The history is you get through rough times after you win a good amount of championships. We certainly had our rocky times, but we still stuck to it, we figured out our way through it and came out better because of it. I think the most important thing is sticking to it, being patient. Sometimes things work out. Sometimes they don’t,” Bryant said.
- Shaun Livingston, who will be a free agent this offseason, is a longtime favorite of Phil Jackson and could be a reasonable target for the Knicks to go after this summer, Keith P. Smith of RealGM writes. Smith argues that Livingston would be a good fit in the triangle offense.