Kings notes: Knicks veterans adding value

Published: Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 5C
Last Modified: Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012 - 6:50 pm

The New York Knicks bolstered their roster in the offseason with a few 30-years-old-and-then-some additions such as Jason Kidd (39), Rasheed Wallace (38), Marcus Camby (38) and Kurt Thomas (40).

Kings coach Keith Smart understands why older players matter.

"You still have veterans with know-how," Smart said before the Kings played the Knicks on Friday night at Sleep Train Arena.

The veteran additions have the Knicks off to a 21-9 start, and there's talk of reaching the Eastern Conference Finals or going beyond.

"The value of strong veteran leadership on a basketball team is very important," Smart said. "But it's also good to have that mix."

And why is that?

"On those back-to-back nights, you need that energy, that enthusiasm some of those young guys bring," Smart said.

Evans progression – Tyreke Evans missed his 11th game of the season because of problems with his left knee.

The soreness has subsided to the point Evans will attempt to play Sunday against the Boston Celtics.

Evans has missed six consecutive games. The problems with Evans' knee began Nov. 27 when he bumped knees with Minnesota forward Andrei Kirilenko.

The last time Evans tried to play was Dec. 16, and he left the game after 10 minutes.

"He's very close," Smart said. "He worked out real well (Thursday), did some work this morning, ran in what we call the G Trainer, did some sprint work on the treadmill and (is) looking forward to another day of practice (today), and hopefully we can get him back on the floor and start putting our team back together a little bit."

Evans is the Kings' second-leading scorer at 15.1 points per game.

Forgetting fast – With DeMarcus Cousins returning to the starting lineup Friday, Smart said there are no unresolved issues stemming from their verbal altercation last Friday or the subsequent suspension.

"Once I deal with an issue I'm done with it, I move on," Smart said.

Familiar face – Former Kings assistant coach Jim Todd was back on the sidelines in Sacramento for the first time since leaving the Kings for the Knicks.

Todd joined the Kings' coaching staff before the start of last season, but after former Knicks coach Mike D'Antoni resigned in March, Todd joined Mike Woodson's staff.

© Copyright The Sacramento Bee. All rights reserved.

Read more articles by Jason Jones



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