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Billups, Stoudemire injuries confirmed by MRIs

Amar'e Stoudemire stretches out on the sideline. (April

Amar'e Stoudemire stretches out on the sideline. (April 19, 2011) Photo Credit: Newsday / J. Conrad Williams Jr.

The MRI results are in and neither are cause for extra alarm for the Knicks. 

-- Amar'e Stoudemire has a pulled muscle in his lower back and is listed as day-to-day.

-- Chauncey Billups has a strained tendon in his left knee and remains listed as questionable for Game 3 of the first round series with the Celtics, which continues Friday at Madison Square Garden.

Both MRI tests were considered precautionary measures. In Billups' case, it allowed the medical staff to see if there is any structural damage to his knee, which buckled late in Game 1. He sat out Tuesday's Game 2 loss in Boston.

Stoudemire experienced painful spasms in his lower back in the first half of Tuesday's game and it limited him to 18 first half minutes until he was forced to sit out the rest of the game. He said he first felt a problem when he attempted a highlight film-type dunk in warmups before the game, which isn't something you want to hear from your star player.

"I touched the top of the glass with my left hand and dunked it with my right," he said. "I think that's when I felt it get tight on me."

During the game, Stoudemire said he "could hardly move" and "couldn't get quite totally lose." By the second quarter it had become "a sharp pain and I couldn't continue."

It was bothering him so much after the game that when he addressed the media in the conference room, he stood in front of the dais with a microphone in hand rather than sit on the stage.

One of the NBA's most fittest players, Stoudemire said he has never experienced back spasms before so he had no idea what to expect over the next few days.

"Hopefully," he said, "I'll be ready to go by Friday."

The team did not practice today, but will hold practice tomorrow at MSG Training Center.


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