Fatigued McGrady takes night off

New York Knicks #3 Tracy McGrady, center, walks New York Knicks #3 Tracy McGrady, center, walks on the court as his teammates greet one another before an NBA basketball game against the Atlanta Hawks. (March 8, 2010) Photo Credit: Photo by JASON DECROW

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Tracy McGrady took his first night off since joining the Knicks on Feb. 18. He told Mike D'Antoni before last night's game against the Hawks that his body was too fatigued for him to play. He is expected to be ready for tomorrow's game in San Antonio.

"He just said he was sore," D'Antoni said. "His body was just dead and it would be better if he took the night off. I don't know after that."

The issue does not involve the surgically repaired knee that has made McGrady - who will be a free agent this summer - extremely cautious. He had microfracture surgery on his left knee in February 2009.

"Structurally, everything's fine," D'Antoni said. "It's just going to take a while. I'm sure he wants to make sure he's not going to push it and hurt something too early. He should be cautious."

D'Antoni has been through the process of a player recovering from microfracture before: Amar'e Stoudemire in 2005-06. "He actually came back two games and then he kind of just fell off the cliff and we shut him down for the rest of the year," D'Antoni said. "Then he came back the next year."

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Knicks fix

With McGrady out, D'Antoni returned Sergio Rodriguez to the starting lineup and replaced Al Harrington with Wilson Chandler. Rookie Toney Douglas, who for some reason hasn't gotten much playing time since the trade deadline, was elevated into the rotation . . . Walt Frazier on a bicycle? Somehow he will make it look cool. The Knicks legend will join MSG Network sideline reporter Jill Martin for a spin class charity event March 20 at the David Barton Gym in Manhattan. The event, which requires a $500 donation to enter the class (and have access to a post-class reception), will benefit the Garden of Dreams foundation.

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