Knicks guard RJ Barrett controls the ball against the Heat...

Knicks guard RJ Barrett controls the ball against the Heat during the first half of an NBA game at Madison Square Garden on Friday. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

Hours before Friday night’s game against the Heat began, the Knicks announced the first round of bad news for the day: Derrick Rose had undergone a surgical procedure to address a skin infection on the site of his December ankle surgery.

Then in the first quarter, promising rookie Quentin Grimes had to be helped to the locker room after suffering a subluxation of the right patella.

There was one positive: RJ Barrett scored 30 points in the first half and finished with a career-high 46. But even that was not enough to get a win as the Knicks fell to Miami, 115-100, at Madison Square Garden.

The good news was that Barrett joined Carl Braun as the only Knicks with at least 40 points at 21 years of age. He shot 13-for-22 from the field and 6-for-11 from three-point range but was only 14-for-22 from the free-throw line. He also had nine rebounds.

The bad? Just about everything else.

The loss was the fourth straight and 14th in the last 17 games for the Knicks (25-35). Julius Randle struggled through a 2-for-15 shooting night, finishing with 11 points, eight rebounds and eight assists.

"It’s like bittersweet," said Barrett, who missed the previous four games with a sprained ankle. "When you have a night like that, of course you want to get the win. That’s the most important thing. We battled the No. 1 team in the East."

"He had a hell of a game, an all-around game at that," Miami’s Jimmy Butler said. "We all know he’s capable of that. I don’t think anybody is surprised or should be surprised. He’s definitely going to be playing in this league for a long time and he’s going to be the face of the Knicks."

Tyler Herro had 25 points off the bench, Butler 23 and Kyle Lowry 19 for the Heat (39-21). Bam Adebayo had 16 points and 16 rebounds.

The Knicks’ hopes of having Rose come back to save their season took another blow. 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.

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.

Thibodeau 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.

"That’s unfortunate, but he’s gotta be healthy, man," Randle said. "If anybody proved he can do it, it’s him, so definitely need to reach out to him, see how he’s doing."

This news came in the wake of Wednesday’s announcement that Kemba Walker was shutting down for the rest 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.

The last best hope for the Knicks was that Barrett and Rose returning to the lineup would provide a boost, but it’s hard to imagine a playoff run by a slumping team that is 3 1⁄2 games behind the last play-in spot in the Eastern Conference.

Without Walker or Rose, Thibodeau turned to Alec Burks (12 points, eight rebounds) as the starter at point guard, but he did give 2:08 of playing time to Miles McBride, who had not played other than garbage-time minutes in recent weeks.

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."