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Knicks news: Tim Hardaway Jr. close to returning

New York's second-leading scorer has been out since early December.
Tim Hardaway Jr. could return to action as early as Friday. (Photo: Getty Images)

The New York Knicks offense has looked out of sync since Tim Hardaway Jr. went down with a stress injury in his lower left leg back in early December, forcing him to miss the team's last 20 games. 

Luckily for the Knicks, the guard could be making his way back to the team shortly, as it was originally reported that he could be back on the floor as early as this weekend, per Newsday's Al Iannazzone

Hardaway has practiced in each of the last three days, including two full team workouts on Tuesday and Thursday.

Following Thursday's practice though, Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek labeled Hardaway as questionable for the team's game on Friday against the Minnesota Timberwolves. 

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Hardaway is in the first year of his 4-year, $71 million contract signed over the summer with the Knicks, the team that originally drafted him before trading him to the Atlanta Hawks.

While he wasn't much more than a role player during his first four seasons, Hardaway has quickly become an integral part of New York's offense this season, ranking second on the team only behind Kristaps Porzingis with 17.8 points per game. 

Since his injury, the Knicks are 8-12 and averaging 102.6 points per game, a dip in production after starting the season 11-10 while putting up 104.5 points per game.

Following Friday's game, the Knicks host the Pelicans on Sunday and meet the Nets in Brooklyn on Monday to kick off a part of a six-game road trip. 

 
 
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