MILWAUKEE - Amar'e Stoudemire's knees couldn't handle the strain of playing five games in seven nights.
Mike Woodson said Stoudemire won't play Wednesday night against the Bucks and would be out "a while" because of swelling in his surgically repaired knees.
Stoudemire wasn't listed on the Knicks' injury report Tuesday, and the team said he didn't undergo any tests. But given Stoudemire's health history, this could be a major cause for concern for him and the Knicks.
"Amar'e's going to be out a while," Woodson said. "I don't know, but he won't play [Wednesday night]."
The last time Stoudemire had this much of a workload was in March, when he played four games in five nights. His regular season ended then as he underwent his second of three knee procedures in a 10-month stretch.
But Stoudemire, who didn't speak to reporters Tuesday, made it sound on his verified Twitter account that this is a precautionary measure.
"I'M NOT INJURED," Stoudemire tweeted, adding he's "ONLY" staying back because it would be six games in nine days with two sets of back-to-back.
Stoudemire won't be the only regular unavailable Wednesday night when the Knicks play the Bucks. Raymond Felton (hamstring), Kenyon Martin (strained abdominal muscle) and Pablo Prigioni (broken toe) are out too. The Knicks said an MRI confirmed Martin's injury and he'll miss at least two more weeks.
If there is any good news for the 7-17 Knicks, it's that Tyson Chandler could make his return after missing 20 games with a broken right leg.
Chandler played three-on-three Tuesday. He still hasn't participated in a full five-on-five scrimmage. He said if he feels all right this morning he'll play.
"I was pretty confident out there moving around with the guys and banging, really not having any setbacks," Chandler said. "Me and coach will discuss it [Wednesday] and go from there."
It might be risky to bring back Chandler since he hasn't played in any simulated games. Chandler and the Knicks will be smart, but they need bodies.
Andrea Bargnani has been playing center with Martin and Chandler out. With Stoudemire sitting, Cole Aldrich is the only other big man on the roster.
Stoudemire had been playing well, but in Monday's loss to Washington he didn't look as sharp and didn't have the lift he had in prior games. Stoudemire shot 1-for-7 in 19 minutes and was limping in the second half.
There had been some warning signs, though.
Woodson said Stoudemire complained of soreness during the Knicks' recent stretch of four games in five nights that ended Saturday night. After Friday's loss in Boston, Stoudemire said he doubted he would play Saturday. But he felt better and played 19 minutes in the win over Atlanta.
Over those four games, Stoudemire averaged 14 points and shot 65.8 percent (25-for-38) in 26.5 minutes.
Last week was the first time Stoudemire played back-to-back games this season. He opened the season on a minutes restriction and couldn't play on consecutive nights.