NEW YORK -- Andrea Bargnani doesn’t quite know when he’ll be back on the court. But he said on Thursday that he “hopes” to return this season.
Bargnani has been out since Jan. 22 with a torn ligament in his left elbow. The Knicks say he is out “indefinitely.”
When asked if he will return this season, Bargnani said, “I really hope so. I will try to do anything.”
If Bargnani has a Grade 1 or Grade 2 tear, he will likely be out 4-6 weeks, according to veteran orthopedic surgeon Dr. Neil Roth. If he needs surgery, he could miss the rest of the season.
Bargnani said on Thursday that he doesn't think he will need surgery.
"I'm not going to have surgery, so far," he said.
Bargnani noted that his most recent elbow injury felt similar to an injury to the right elbow ailment that sidelined him for 26 games last season.
“It’s a pretty similar sensation, almost the same. [The] doctors say out indefinitely,” Bargnani said. “We’ll see how it heals, because it’s a ligament, we have to see how it heals.”
Bargnani tore the ligament on a dunk attempt against Philadelphia. He landed awkwardly on his forearms and elbows.
“There’s no other way you can fall. My head was going down, so it was instinct to put my arms in front and I can see the elbow sliding,” he said.
Bargnani is the Knicks' second-leading scorer. With Bargnani out, Carmelo Anthony has filled in at power forward, and the Knicks have gone with a "small-ball" lineup.
"It’s terrible, just terrible," said Bargnani, who the Knicks acquired in an offseason trade. "But what can you do? I come from a similar injury last year so it’s even more frustrating."
The Knicks are 3-0 since Bargnani went down. The offense has been extremely efficient in that span.
When Bargnani was healthy, the Knicks scored 100.8 points per 100 possessions with him on the floor. Since Bargnani went down with an elbow injury, they’ve averaged 126.5 points per 100 possessions and have gone with the two-point guard lineup that was so successful last season.
"I think we played great the last three games," Bargnani said. "We really got to keep going with this rhythm, especially after the first part of the season, we are in the second half and we need to make the push."
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“It means a lot, it means the world to me,” Hardaway Jr. said. “... I’m just gonna have fun with the teammates I have out there and have a great experience.”
Hardaway Jr. is averaging 8.6 points per game in 19.5 minutes. He’s shooting 41 percent from beyond the arc.
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