McGrady starts in Knicks debut

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Tracy McGrady is starting in his New York Knicks debut on Saturday night against Oklahoma City.

McGrady played only limited minutes in six games for the Rockets this season after coming back from microfracture knee surgery, but the seven-time All-Star
was on the court as the Knicks tipped off at Madison Square Garden.

Coach Mike D'Antoni said he hopes McGrady can play 25 to 30 minutes Saturday in what will be his first action since Dec. 23.

"Physically I feel good, but then again I haven't played in a year and a half," said McGrady, who was acquired by the Knicks on Thursday in a three-time deal with Houston and Sacramento. "Even the eight minutes I was playing, you really can't get a feel of how long I can play. But yeah, I think I'm ready to go."

D'Antoni wasn't sure either, since McGrady was limited to only about 7½ minutes a game this season after surgery last February. The swingman has played 41 games over the last two seasons.

"I asked him about everything and he says 'I have no idea,' " D'Antoni said. "We'll talk about it during the game and there's no restrictions on him from a medical standpoint, only how he feels and the way he looks and all that. But he'll communicate with me when he wants to come out."

The Knicks held their first morning shootaround at home this season so their new acquisitions could become more familiar with the offense. They also brought in point guard Sergio Rodriguez in the three-team trade, and acquired Eddie House, Bill Walker and J.R. Giddens in a deal that sent Nate Robinson to Boston.

The biggest piece was McGrady, more for his $22.5 million expiring contract than for the talents that won him two scoring titles. Even McGrady acknowledged that he'll be rusty and expects his timing and rhythm to be off.

"I don't think a lot of people expect a lot out of me anyway. So, it's really no pressure," McGrady said. "I'm just looking forward to going out there and playing."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.