New York Knicks guard Derrick Rose is seen during a...

New York Knicks guard Derrick Rose is seen during a timeout in the second half against the Memphis Grizzlies at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2022. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

The Knicks’ hopes of having Derrick Rose come back to save their season took another blow Friday. The team announced that the 33-year-old point guard had what was called a minor procedure on his right ankle, with no time line set for a return.

The procedure was to repair a skin infection in the area of the original surgery. While a league source confirmed an ESPN report of the nature of the procedure, there was no confirmation of a timetable. ESPN reported that Rose could return in one to two weeks.

Coach Tom Thibodeau said he had not gotten an update other than that the procedure, which he described as a cleanup, went well.

The reality is that starting with Friday night’s game at Madison Square Garden against the Miami Heat, there were only 23 games left in a season that has been a disappointment for a long time. Rose has not played in a game since Dec. 16. He had a surgical procedure shortly after that and then had a long rehabilitation.

With the team returning from the All-Star break Wednesday, Rose had stepped up his workouts, joining the Knicks for full practice sessions for two days. While the Knicks were hopeful that would signal a return to the active roster, there was always the thought that how he responded to the increased workload would determine when he could play.

"It’s unfortunate,’’ Thibodeau said. "For any of the players, when there’s a setback, you feel for them but you have to move on. You’ve got to keep going. The next guy has to step in there. But it’s unfortunate. You don’t like to see anyone get hurt."

He said Rose was not in pain after the two days of practice but did feel some discomfort. "He had been doing quite a bit other than we just added the contact part of it," he said.

This news comes in the wake of Wednesday’s announcement that Kemba Walker was shutting down for the remainder of the season, likely bringing his Knicks career to an end less than a full season in. It leaves the Knicks without the two point guards they had figured on when the offseason plans were constructed, and they also lost guard Quentin Grimes on Friday night with a right patella subluxation.

The last best hope for the Knicks was that RJ Barrett and Rose returning to the lineup would provide a boost, but now it’s hard to imagine a playoff run with the team entering Friday night at 25-34 and three games behind the last play-in spot in the Eastern Conference.

Thibodeau said Wednesday that he thought Alec Burks might give the Knicks the best chance as the starting point guard, but this could mean more time for not only Immanuel Quickley, who already was a part of the rotation, but possibly even rookie Miles McBride and recently signed Ryan Arcidiacono.

"Burks and Quickley will be in tonight," Thibodeau said Friday. "And then we’ll see how it unfolds."

While fans have clamored for the younger players, Thibodeau has stuck with Burks as the first option this season when he was without Walker or Rose, and he made a case for it again.

"If you just look at the games that he played at the point and you dug into the numbers, you’d see it," he said. "So that’s given us our best chance. Talking about when he’s started, there’s a plus net rating. It gives us versatility. It gives us size at the point. And then if you went game by game, you’d see that. It’s a compilation of things. You have to look at your team and what you think gives you the best chance to win, and right now that’s what it is."