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Carmelo Anthony stiff, sore and unsure of return to Knicks lineup

Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks

Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks waits on the court during their game against the Houston Rockets at the Toyota Center on Nov. 24, 2014 in Houston. Credit: Getty Images / Scott Halleran

DALLAS - After spending the day in his hotel room resting and getting treatment on his back, Carmelo Anthony arrived at the arena just before tip-off and was seen still walking gingerly.

Anthony said he felt "sore, stiff," and was in no condition to play against the Mavericks Wednesday night because of back spasms. He also said he isn't sure when he'll return.

"It's gotten a little better, but today was the first day that I actually got to walk around a little bit," Anthony said through a team spokesman.

"They said these things are hard to gauge. I just don't know how long I'll be out."

Anthony experienced back spasms late in the first half of Monday's 91-86 loss in Houston. He walked slowly off the court and even more slowly out of the Toyota Center. J.R. Smith said Anthony was in so much pain "he could barely talk."

The Knicks' bus had to stop at a 24-hour urgent care facility for pain medication that wasn't available in the arena.

There hasn't been a timetable on how long Anthony will be out. The Knicks close out the three-game trip Friday in Oklahoma City. His status for that game is unclear but it doesn't looking promising.

"I just don't know," Anthony said. "It's too far ahead for me to even think about right now."

Anthony said he's never had back spasms before, and that nothing specifically triggered it.

"Nothing happened that I can remember," he said. "This is the first time I've ever had spasms -- I've never felt this way before."

Cuban swipes at Fisher

Mavericks owner Mark Cuban took a shot at Derek Fisher when he was asked if he was concerned about the first-year coach's commitment level to a team with a losing record.

"No, I'm more concerned with his health and welfare," Cuban said. "I know how hard it is for him to fly and travel and be away."

Fisher asked to be released by the Mavericks in 2013 because he said he was having a difficult time being away from his family in Los Angeles. Two months after being waived, Fisher signed with Oklahoma City.

Cuban also said he never really believed the Mavericks had a chance to sign Anthony after meeting with him during free agency. "We felt so confident we signed Chandler [Parsons] before [Anthony] made his final decision," Cuban said.

New York Sports