D’Antoni paused and issued a diplomatic answer about how Glen Grunwald, the Knicks’ interim general manager, is exploring possible short-term opportunities.
And then D’Antoni flashed a smile that all but said there was no chance of a return for the diminutive, talented but sometimes exasperating Robinson, whom Oklahoma City waived on Saturday.
Still, with three games in four days beckoning on a West Coast trip that begins Wednesday against Golden State and its new coach, the former Knick Mark Jackson, the Knicks need help.
They should get some from Mike Bibby, who after sitting out nearly a week with a back injury is expected to make his Knicks debut Wednesday.
Bibby is particularly needed because the rookie point guard Iman Shumpert is expected to miss two to four weeks with a sprained right knee sustained in Sunday’s victory over the Celtics.
In addition, Jared Jeffries is expected to miss one to two weeks with a groin injury.
That leaves the offense in the hands of Toney Douglas, with Bibby behind him. And it is not much better at the other backcourt spot, where starter Landry Fields does not have a healthy natural shooting guard to back him up.
And there will be times when Carmelo Anthony initiates the offense, as he did for most of his 17-point fourth quarter Sunday.
Anthony said he did not do much of that the past three seasons playing alongside Chauncey Billups in Denver and in New York. But because D’Antoni says that Douglas is not “the classic playmaker,” Anthony is needed.
As for the 33-year-old Bibby, he will give the Knicks a different look, D’Antoni said, because “Mike’s been in the league for 58 years.”
D’Antoni added, “He’s got experience, he knows how to run a team and he’ll make open shots.”
SPURS 95, GRIZZLIES 82 Manu Ginobili scored 24 points and San Antonio got some payback after a stunning playoff collapse last season, beating visiting Memphis. (AP)
MAGIC 104, ROCKETS 95 Hedo Turkoglu scored 23 points to lead five Magic players in double figures as Orlando earned its first victory of the season with a win over visiting Houston. (AP)
RAPTORS 104, CAVALIERS 96 The rookie Kyrie Irving scored 6 points and hardly played like the No. 1 overall pick as visiting Toronto spoiled the Cleveland guard’s N.B.A. debut. (AP)
PACERS 91, PISTONS 79 Roy Hibbert had 16 points and 14 rebounds to help host Indiana top Detroit in the season opener for both teams at the renamed Bankers Life Fieldhouse. (AP)
BOBCATS 96, BUCKS 95 D. J. Augustin scored 19 points, the rookie Kemba Walker added 13, including two free throws with 9.9 seconds remaining, and Charlotte erased a 14-point deficit to beat visiting Milwaukee in the teams’ season opener. (AP)
THUNDER 104, T’WOLVES 100 Kevin Durant scored 33 points to lead Oklahoma City, which has started off a season loaded with expectations at 2-0, to a win at Minnesota. (AP)
NUGGETS 115, MAVERICKS 93 Ty Lawson scored 20 of his 27 points in the first half for visiting Denver as Dallas was drubbed for a second straight game, routinely giving up easy baskets in both. (AP)
HORNETS 85, SUNS 84 Eric Gordon made a 20-footer from the top of the key with 4.2 seconds to play in his Hornets debut to give New Orleans a victory at Phoenix. (AP)