BOSTON -- Amare Stoudemire was in the starting lineup Wednesday night for the New York Knicks' meaningless regular-season finale against the Boston Celtics as coach Mike D'Antoni elected to get him one last run before the playoffs.
D'Antoni said Stoudemire, who missed three games with a sprained left ankle, would play one stint in the first quarter and another in the third quarter, but no more. He scored 14 points in 20 minutes of the Knicks' 112-102 loss.
Carmelo Anthony and Chauncey Billups were on the inactive list for the Knicks, who will open the playoffs back here Sunday night. The Knicks starting lineup Wednesday was Toney Douglas, Landry Fields, Bill Walker, Ronny Turiaf and Stoudemire.
D'Antoni also said Turiaf will be the starting center for Game 1 of the playoff series against the Celtics.
The decision to play Stoudemire was made after team medical personnel pronounced Stoudemire 100 percent healed from the ankle sprain he sustained last week against Philadelphia.
"He said he wanted to play, so I said OK," D'Antoni said. "He felt like he needed to, wanted to, he wants to get kind of in a game floor a little bit. He said he feels great, he worked out yesterday pretty hard and he wants to go."
Stoudemire had played 77 of 78 games before missing three in a row. He is averaging 25.4 points per game, second on the team behind Anthony (25.6 in 27 games with the Knicks) and fifth-best in the NBA.
Meanwhile, the Celtics' list of available bodies Wednesday was about as long as the list of those who are not.
Coach Doc Rivers rested Delonte West, Jermaine O'Neal, Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, Shaquille O'Neal and Rajon Rondo. The Celtics trotted out a starting lineup of Carlos Arroyo, Von Wafer, Jeff Green, Glen Davis, and Nenad Krstic. That left Avery Bradley, Troy Murphy, and Sasha Pavlovic available off the bench.
Chris Sheridan covers the NBA for ESPN.com and ESPNNewYork.com. ESPNBoston.com's Chris Forsberg contributed to this report.