By Ian Begley | ESPN.com
Anthony maintained that he plans to play in Sunday’s game at Madison Square Garden, “even if it’s just a few minutes” — but could be done playing after that.
“It’s very likely. It’s very likely. Now I’ve got to start thinking about the future,” Anthony told Marc Stein, Marc Kestecher and P.J. Carlesimo in an interview on ESPN Radio. “This season is this season. So I really want to just sit down with my team and sit down with the proper people to just kind of plan this thing out and see exactly what I have to do to get done and just to fix it.”
The Knicks’ leading scorer and franchise player has been dealing with soreness in his left knee for months. Anthony aggravated the injury in Monday’s loss to the Miami Heat and sat out Wednesday’s loss to the Orlando Magic.
Despite the injury, he plans to appear in Sunday’s All-Star Game to honor the fans who voted him in as an Eastern Conference starter.
“Even if I come out and just play a couple minutes and just wave,” Anthony said. “I don’t think the fans deserve [seeing me miss the game]. They voted me in for a reason, so at least I can show them that I appreciate that by just participating in the game.”
The eight-time All-Star also reiterated on Thursday that if he undergoes a surgical procedure to fix his knee, it won’t interfere with his offseason workout schedule.
“That’s why if anything was to get done, I want to get it done right away so I’m not taking time and missing training camp and things like that,” Anthony said. “When I come back to training camp, I want to be sharp.”
The Knicks have been cautious with Anthony by reducing his minutes and requiring the 12-year veteran to sit out some games during loaded stretches in the schedule, such as skipping the second night of a back-to-back set of games.
But Anthony said earlier this week that playing through the knee soreness was only growing more frustrating.
“It’s little things that I’m doing out there on the court,” Anthony said. “I’m restricted, I’m not getting that power or that bounce, and then to do something like I did today, I think I’m getting closer to that point. I think due to the lack of movement, the lack of explosiveness I have right now — I’m just trying to compensate and try to figure it out as it goes along.”
The Knicks enter the All-Star break at 10-43, the worst record in the NBA. Knicks president Phil Jackson hopes to turn things around this summer via the draft and free agency. The Knicks have a first-round pick in June’s draft and are expected to have upwards of $30 million in cap space to spend on free agents.
“The fate is in the front office now,” Anthony said.
He added that he’s looking forward to recruiting free agents with Jackson and the rest of the Knicks’ front office in the offseason.
“I can relate to these guys. I compete against them,” Anthony said of prospective free agents. “I know what it takes to play in New York. I know who can handle New York and who can’t handle New York. … If I’m coming to you, that means I really want you to come over here and join forces with me.”
The full interview with Anthony airs Saturday on ESPN Radio at 5:30 p.m. ET as part of the “Meet the All-Stars” show.
ESPN.com’s Michael Wallace contributed to this report.
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