Iman Shumpert is about six weeks into his six-month recovery, which is going according to plan.
"[The doctors] say I'm right on target with everything. I'll be walking next week," the combo guard told the New York Post on Thursday during a midtown event at Lord & Taylor. "I'm being really optimistic about it, really happy about it, hopefully it picks up soon."
Shumpert expects to miss the first month of the 2012-13 campaign. In his short-term absence -- and with Baron Davis likely out for the entire season -- the Knicks will need to shore up their backcourt.
They will likely utilize free agency to sign a guard to the veteran's minimum of $1.4 million, because they don't have much salary-cap space. The top point-guard candidates at that price could include Gary Neal, Kirk Hinrich and Jonny Flynn. Two outside shots are Raymond Felton and Ramon Sessions, who could likely fetch more money in the market.
As for shooting guards at the veteran's minimum rate, Anthony Parker, Randy Foye and Nate Robinson could be some of the front-runners.
While the Knicks may not have enough pieces to trade up in the draft to select in the late first-round -- Doron Lamb, Jeffrey Taylor and Dion Waiters are intriguing -- the 2012 class is pretty deep 20 to 50. At No. 48, some attractive players include: Jae Crowder, Darius Johnson-Odom, Kim English, Rakim Sanders and Iona's Scott Machado, who is the likeliest out of this bunch to be picked higher.
Many free agents are still undecided about their offseason plans and most agents have been consumed with the pre-draft process, especially this week in Chicago for the main combine. More news related to the free-agency period should start later next week.
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