Knicks’ OG Anunoby could miss several games with elbow injury

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SAN FRANCISCO — OG Anunoby’s surgically repaired elbow “flared up” and he’s headed back to New York ahead of Monday’s game against the Warriors and possibly Thursday’s contest at Denver, Tom Thibodeau said.

Testing showed swelling but no new injuries, Nix said.

There is no return date for Anunoby, who had surgery in February to remove loose bone from his elbow, and Thibodeau didn’t want to answer whether he was brought back too soon.

“You can’t work backwards,” Thibodeau said. “He had to go through many phases. He met all the markers. It was cleared. This is a possibility. Whenever you come back from surgery, this is what you see. And so, we feel good about where he is. And just give him as much time as he needs.

Knicks forward OG Anunoby is expected to miss several games due to an elbow injury. Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post

The messages from Thibodeau, Anunoby and the Knicks over the past few days were very different. He claimed “pain” was anticipated, dismissing the idea that he would sit out the game.

On Saturday, Anunoby even said he was “ready” to defend Steph Curry.

Then after being listed as questionable on Sunday night, Anunoby went home and by Monday morning he was downgraded to “out”.

“When you talked to him after the game, he felt good. The next day he didn’t feel so good,” Thibodeau said. “So we wanted to make sure everything was fine. We sent him back, got him MRI done. Came back after getting cleaned. And now let it cool down. And then go from there.”

Anunoby played in three games after returning but tension increased on the field during last week’s win over the Blazers.

His presence was a big boost for the Knicks’ defense, who are 15-2 with him in the lineup. But he shot 1 of 8 in Saturday’s win over the Kings and appeared uncomfortable with his release after the pain resurfaced in Portland.

According to people familiar with his tenure in Toronto – where Anunoby missed a lot of time due to injuries – the 26-year-old is not comfortable playing through pain.

He is also a free agent after the season and is in line for a big contract, which the Knicks will be eager to pay as they traded two young promising pieces – RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley – to get him from the Raptors Was.

After the Nuggets game on Thursday, the Knicks are home to four very winnable games in a row against the Nets, Pistons, Spurs and Raptors. Then the schedule to finish the season becomes very difficult.

And it’s unclear when Anunoby’s inflammation will subside.

After Anunoby displayed obvious pain in last week’s game at Portland, a specialist doctor – who did not treat the Knicks – warned that the inflammation should require “an extended period of rest.”

“If his elbow was swollen, which it could be, I would be concerned. Dr. Andrew S., chief of the department of shoulder and elbow surgery at NYU Langone Orthopedics. “I would be concerned if he didn’t have full range of motion in his elbow,” Rokito said. “And I would be concerned about how much pain he is in. All of these things will affect my anxiety levels. And if all those boxes are checked, a more extended period of rest will be required.

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