Friday , Oct , 31 , 2008 C.Y. Ellis

Donnie Walsh Supports Benching of Stephon Marbury

Donnie Walsh backed his coach’s decision to bench $21.9- million guard Stephon Marbury in Wednesday’s 120-115 season-opening win over the Miami Heat. Walsh, who was against the idea of a buyout for Marbury, said it is Mike D’Antoni’s call who plays and who doesn’t.

"I deliver the roster," Walsh said. "It’s up to him to play the guys he thinks he can win with."

D’Antoni said Marbury was caught in a numbers crunch for minutes and the focus on developing young players over relying heavily on veterans. Nate Robinson (24:43) and Mardy Collins (10:21) played the bulk of the guard minutes off the bench. Rookie Danilo Gallinari saw 3:32 at small forward, where D’Antoni also had used Marbury during the preseason. "I’ve got to do what’s best for the Knicks right now," D’Antoni said.