SACRAMENTO, Calif. - You can add Amar'e Stoudemire's health to the long list of concerns for the Knicks in this troubling season.
Stoudemire has soreness in his right knee that could force him to miss all three games of the Knicks' West Coast trip. He has a history of knee trouble and has had his right knee scoped multiple times. Stoudemire said he could undergo tests when the Knicks return home next week to see if it's more than soreness.
The Knicks have tried to be careful with Stoudemire and give him "recovery days" to help keep him healthy. Because of all the injuries the Knicks have experienced, though, he said he chose to play more. That "deviated'' from the plan, causing his knee to get worse.
"I've been somewhat playing with a little soreness for the past week or so," Stoudemire said before the Knicks opened the trip Saturday night against the Kings. "I've been playing somewhat through it. But I think by doing that, I made it worse. So now I'm just trying to rest and see if it gets better."
Stoudemire said he won't play Sunday night in Portland and isn't sure about New Year's Eve against the Clippers in Los Angeles. It will depend on how his knee feels then.
Stoudemire has appeared in 28 games and is averaging 13.1 points and 26.4 minutes. It's the most he's played since the 2011-12 lockout season. The Knicks took a 5-26 record into their game against the Kings.
"With the team not playing well, I felt it was only right to be out there with my guys to help us win," Stoudemire said. "It didn't pan out too well as far as my rest and recovery days. We have a game plan and we somewhat deviated from that plan. Now my right knee is sore, so we got to figure out and see how it feels, see what's going on.
"I'm sure this week will be a lot of rest and recovery and we'll see if everything calms down and gets better. When we get back to New York, we'll re-evaluate."
Joining Stoudemire in the infirmary in Sacramento were usual suspects J.R. Smith, Andrea Bargnani, Iman Shumpert and Cleanthony Early. It was the ninth straight game Smith missed because of a partial tear of his left plantar fascia.
Quincy Acy also was out, serving his one-game suspension for his flagrant foul 2 against John Wall. The Knicks had only nine players available.
Stoudemire was supposed to have a "recovery day" Dec. 18 in Chicago, but he decided to play because Carmelo Anthony was out with his own knee problem.
He missed the next two games, giving him six days off before he played on Thursday. Although Stoudemire was sore beforehand, he said the Knicks were "undermanned," so he decided to play in their loss to the Wizards.
"It's nothing to be too concerned about," Stoudemire said. "It's nothing major. It's just a matter of seeing what's going on and taking care of it whatever it is, if it's rest and recovery, and then we'll go from there."
Injuries have taken a toll on the Knicks.
Anthony has a knee issue that might require surgery. If the Knicks keep losing, he could opt to rest to see if it improves or have it repaired. Only Samuel Dalembert, Tim Hardaway Jr. and Jason Smith have appeared in every game. Derek Fisher said it has stunted his team's growth and development.
"It's unfortunate to be on a team where you have so many guys that are in and out," Fisher said. "You try to do something positive, but it seems like things just keep getting thrown at you. Most nights guys have still gone out there and are competing. We've had a chance to win a lot of games, but we haven't.
"Hopefully when we get bodies back, we can string some success together instead of just kind of hoping for a night here and there."