The team announced Thursday evening that Anunoby had surgery to remove a loose bone fragment from his right elbow. Anunoby has not been available since his late scratch on Jan. 29 against Charlotte.
According to SNY's Ian Begley, Anunoby's procedure is viewed by the team and the player "as the most effective/fastest way to get him fully healthy" for the stretch run and postseason.
"League source says Anunoby is expected to be back doing basketball activities in three weeks," according to Begley.
“We tried to approach it with rest first, and then you trust the medical and then you trust him and this was the best course of action,” Thibodeau said. “...So it seemed to make the most sense to all of us. That’s part of it, you deal with it, next guy get in there, get the job done.”
Thibodeau said it is hard to say when the injury to Anunoby first happened. The Knicks originally classified the injury as "elbow inflammation" before the injury was re-classified.
“These things are not uncommon when you play in like 50 games, most players are nicked up with something this time of the year,” the head coach added. “It was inflammation and we thought we can get through it and unfortunately that didn’t happen. Then you gather the information, you consult the experts and then you make a decision.
“So the process of what we did I think was really good. And, obviously, OG is a big part of it, his agent is a big part of it, and then our medical team. So this was the best course of action for us.”
Earlier in the day, New York made a deal with the Detroit Pistons for forward Bojan Bogdanovic (as well as guard Alec Burks) and Anunoby's elbow was a part of the decision-making process, with Begley noting that the Knicks' "uncertainty/concern" factored into the team's approach at the deadline.
The Knicks will play nine games over the final three weeks in February.
New York will then have 22 regular season games remaining in the regular season in the ensuing six weeks, concluding on April 14.
In Anunoby's 14 games with the Knicks after arriving in a trade with the Toronto Raptors, the forward is averaging 15.6 points and 4.6 rebounds and is a combined plus-252 in that span.