Knicks 'zzone

Newsday's Al Iannazzone takes you inside the Knicks.

Raymond Felton will return tonight

Raymond Felton goes up for a layup in

Raymond Felton goes up for a layup in front of Chicago Bulls guard Kirk Hinrich. (Dec. 21, 2012) (Credit: David Pokress)

Raymond Felton passed his last test and was cleared to play tonight. Jason Kidd’s back felt much better when he woke up and he will play tonight. And Mike Woodson will unveil a new starting lineup against the 76ers.

Felton and Kidd will start in the backcourt with Iman Shumpert at small forward, Carmelo Anthony at power forward and Tyson Chandler center. This starting five could prove effective, depending on the matchup.

The Knicks have more scoring, more defense and some younger legs with that group.

“I love that,” Felton said. “Because I think that's three very aggressive guards on defense and offensively. I look forward to that.”

If Kidd was unable to go, Woodson planned to start James White at small forward and move Shumpert back to shooting guard.

Felton had his hand checked by the doctor yesterday to make sure it was OK after his first contact practice since fracturing his right pinky Christmas Day.

“It’s what we both expected,” Felton said. “It’s what we both wanted – put it that way.”

Woodson and Felton said there wouldn’t be a minutes’ restriction on him. The Knicks were 20-8 with Felton and 6-6 without him.

Tags: Knicks , Raymond Felton , Tyson Chandler , Carmelo Anthony , Jason Kidd , Mike Woodson , Iman Shumpert , James White

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