GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Amare Stoudemire will go into next season with $45 million left on his contract and no guarantee of a starting job. He also could remain a reserve who plays restricted minutes. Searching for ways to improve next season, the New York Knicks could use a reliable second scorer and dependable low-post option. They have no way of knowing if Stoudemire can provide either because of his knees. "Hes a heck of a player and I think we all know that. The question is his health and how much he can play," general manager Glen Grunwald said Tuesday. "So weve got our medical staff and training staff working with him to design an off-season program that will get him to full health, and we hope hell be able to play significant minutes for us next year. How much that will be, we dont know at this time." Stoudemire was limited to just 29 games in the regular season and four brief appearances in the post-season because of a pair of knee surgeries. Following a 54-28 finish and their first playoff series victory since 2000, improvement wont be easy for the Knicks. Their options will be limited by salary cap rules, and its unclear if they even want to make many changes. Grunwald agreed with players that the best strategy might be giving this seasons roster more time together. "Our focus is to continue to build this core team," Grunwald said in a rare meeting with reporters. "I think some continuity, some familiarization, further growth as individual and as a team, I think thats what we have to do." That could mean re-signing sixth man J.R. Smith if he becomes a free agent, though Grunwald wouldnt comment on specific plans. He also said 40-year-old Jason Kidd, who has two years left on his deal, gave no indication during his exit meeting that he planned to retire after a dismal post-season. Grunwald said the Knicks wont be allowed to acquire players in sign-and-trade deals and have only the exception for taxpaying teams, starting at about $3.2 million next season. They wont get much top talent for that, but they would if Stoudemire could come back and play at anywhere near his former All-Star level. He has to show the Knicks he can be healthy before showing them he deserves to start again. "I havent made that decision. Ill have the summer to kind of evaluate where I go with that, but I think first things first, hes got to come back healthy," coach Mike Woodson said. "I mean, that is the major part of this. Our struggles in terms of where we wanted to go this season was the fact that we had the injury with STAT. STAT was ready I thought when he came in, but he got hurt. "A lot is going to depend on where he is once he steps foot in vet camp in terms of where he is health-wise and minute restrictions, that may be the case. All of thats going to play a major role in STAT in terms of where we go with our ballclub and him playing, because I just dont know at this point." Stoudemire worked hard last summer following an injury-plagued 2011-12 season, training with Hakeem Olajuwon to add low-post moves. But he had surgery to clean up and remove tissue from his left knee in training camp and was sidelined until New Years Day. He was playing well in March but then ended up needing the same procedure, called a debridement, on the other knee. He returned for the second round but was clearly rusty and played just 33 minutes, Woodson hardly using him in the final two games. The Knicks didnt get nearly enough scoring in the paint against Indiana, something a healthy Stoudemire could have changed. "I think STAT ... couldve really helped us in that area because we had developed him over the summer to give us some low scoring, and the fact that he just wasnt, I dont think, where we needed him based on his injuries, that kind of hurt us a little bit," Woodson said, acknowledging the Knicks were a jump-shooting team this season and may have to look at adding someone with a low-post game. The Knicks gave Stoudemire a five-year deal worth nearly $100 million in 2010, but hes been unable to remain healthy. He and Carmelo Anthony havent played enough to be comfortable and productive together, and when Stoudemire was sidelined to start the season, Woodson moved Anthony to Stoudemires power forward spot. Anthony ended up winning his first scoring title and the Knicks their first division title since 1994. Once Stoudemire returned, he was limited at first to about 20 minutes a game, which was gradually increased to 30 before he was hurt again. Woodson never seemed to consider starting him, even when frontcourt injuries left few other options, and will have to hope Stoudemire can be healthy enough to give him something to think about next season. "Thatll be for us to determine where our roster winds up next year and where everyone else is," Grunwald said. "I thought he had a great role in terms of where Woody put him in to be successful, in terms of coming off the bench as Woody said, and whether that continues next year or not will be determined. But theres no grand plan per se that hell start or not start. Itll be determined on what Woody decides is best for the team that will give us the best chance to win." http://www.49ersrookiestore.com/49ers-Daniel-Kilgore-Jersey/ . -- Ken Appleby made 32 saves for his first shutout of the season to lead the Oshawa Generals to a 2-0 win over the Belleville Bulls on Wednesday in Ontario Hockey League action. http://www.49ersrookiestore.com/49ers-Robbie-Gould-Jersey/ . - After leading the Saints to a fourth playoff appearance in five seasons, Drew Brees expressed confidence in the direction of his team and, perhaps more importantly, showed a willingness to listen to contract proposals if the team needs his help getting under the NFLs salary cap. http://www.49ersrookiestore.com/49ers-Joe-Staley-Jersey/ . Both players have lower body injuries that will keep them out of the lineup until at least January 31, which is the first game they can be activated from IR. http://www.49ersrookiestore.com/49ers-Carlos-Hyde-Jersey/ . A statement from the worlds top-ranked player says all checks "were satisfactory and showed positive evolution" regarding the injury, which contributed to his loss to Stanislas Wawrinka in the final in Melbourne. http://www.49ersrookiestore.com/49ers-Joshua-Garnett-Jersey/ . But Bourque, who has missed three games with a lower-body injury, wont be in the lineup when the Habs travel to Buffalo to take on the Sabres on Wednesday. Philadelphia 76ers prized rookie Ben Simmons is scheduled to undergo surgery next week on the broken bone he suffered Friday in his right foot, league sources told ESPN on Saturday.The No. 1 overall pick is expected to miss about three months, a source told ESPNs Jeff Goodman, which would peg his return in December or possibly even January.Sources told ESPN on Saturday that doctors involved believe Simmons suffered an acute injury -- caused by landing on another players foot -- and not a stress reaction, and that the Sixers are supportive of a conservative timetable for his recovery.?Team president Bryan Colangelo said there was no way Simmons would be rushed back. He could miss months with this type of injury.I feel very badly for Ben to be in a situation to start his career this way. But this is an injury that he should come back from and have a very successful and long career, Colangelo said.Simmons told reporters last week that he weighed 217 pounds before Philadelphia drafted him in June and has gained 33 pounds over the three-plus months since, sparking speculation that the weight increase was a factor.But sources told ESPN that Simmons weighed in at 240 pounds in July shortly after he was drafted when he played for Philadelphias summer league squad in Las Vegas -- where he was lauded for his passing eye and movement -- and reported to training camp earlier this week at 244 pounds.Two sources with knowledge of doctor examinations of Simmons said Saturday that the injury is an acute fracture of the fifth metatarsal bone caused when he landed on the foot of teammate Shawn Long during a scrimmage Friday at Stockton University in New Jersey. The Sixers, wracked by injuriies to several top draftees in recent years, were initially hopeful Simmons merely rolled his ankle.ddddddddddddIn addition to the team physicians who have examined the 20-year-old, sources said, Simmons advisers have consulted foot specialist Brian Donley of the Cleveland Clinic as the parties continue to pursue a firm recovery timetable.Simmons setback is the latest blow for a franchise that has been forced to wait for its first glimpse of numerous recent draftees.Joel Embiid, selected No. 3 overall by the Sixers in 2014, has yet to play in the NBA because of multiple surgeries on his right foot. Nerlens Noel, drafted No. 6 in 2013, was forced to sit out his entire rookie season in 2013-14 with a torn ACL. No. 3 selection Jahlil Okafor, the No. 3 selection in 2015?had his rookie campaign cut short after 53 games by season-ending surgery on his right knee.In addition, Dario Saric played his first two pro seasons in Turkey after being selected by Orlando with the No. 12 overall pick in 2014 and being traded to Philadelphia on draft night. Saric signed with the Sixers in August and is in the midst of his first NBA training camp.Simmons is the Sixers first No. 1 overall pick since Allen Iverson in 1996.The former LSU star won plaudits for his performance through the first week of training camp.I never played with somebody [like him], Saric told Philadelphia reporters this week. Everybody puts pressure on him, but I think hell handle this.?ESPN Staff Writer Baxter Holmes contributed to this report.?The Associated Press contributed to this report.? 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