ATLANTA -- If the New York Knicks are serious about trying to make a playoff push, they may have to start without one of their best players.
Point guard Derrick Rose hurt his left ankle on Friday and may not play Sunday afternoon when the Knicks visit the Atlanta Hawks.
Rose stepped on Kemba Walker's foot in Friday's win over Charlotte and left the game with 4:19 in the third period. He did not return.
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"It's nothing major," Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek said after the game. "He'll be back whenever sprained ankles heal. Could be the next game, could be two, three games."
Rose has missed six games with back spasms this season. Brandon Jennings finished the game for Rose on Friday and had 15 points in the 110-107 win over the Hornets.
New York (21-27) has won two of its last three games. The Knicks are in the fourth game of a six-game stretch that includes five road games. They are two games out of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
"Over the past six or seven games, our effort has been much better," New York's Carmelo Anthony said. "We're playing harder than we have in the past and as a result we've won a couple of games. Our energy is a big reason we've been winning some games."
Atlanta (27-20) showed little energy in its 112-86 home loss to the Washington Wizards on Friday. The Hawks were sluggish on offense and defense and allowed the faster-paced Wizards to take control of the game early.
"We came out lackadaisical," said Atlanta forward Paul Millsap, who scored a season-low four points after learning he'd been named to the NBA All-Star team. "We didn't give them any resistance. We have to focus on ourselves and figure it out."
The Hawks will also need a better effort from point guard Dennis Schroder. He was 3-for-11 shooting with four turnovers and a minus-24 against the Wizards. Against the Knicks this season, Schroder has been either very good (27 and 28 points) or very bad (one point).
"We can't come out like (they did against Washington)," Schroder said. "We just have to be better. It starts with me. I have to set the tone."
It will be the final meeting between the teams this season. Atlanta has two of the three previous games. The Hawks won the last meeting on Jan. 16 when Schroder made a late 3-pointer in a 108-107 victory.
Atlanta fans are more likely to remember the previous game in Atlanta on Dec. 28. Anthony was ejected in the first period after punching Hawks guard Thabo Sefolosha. The Knicks were already playing without Courtney Lee, who was out with a sore wrist, and Atlanta prevailed 102-98.