Baron Davis was carted off on a stretcher after dislocating his right kneecap Sunday in the third quarter of an 89-87 victory over Miami in Game 4, the latest key injury for the Knicks.
Veteran Mike Bibby helped New York pull out the victory, hitting a huge 3-pointer with 1:23 left.
''The guy has been around a long time and he still has the heart of steel to make big shots when it counts,'' interim coach Mike Woodson said.
But Bibby, who will be 34 next week, can't do it alone, and there's not much left at the position.
Lin is close to returning after having surgery to repair torn cartilage in his knee on April 2. He has been practicing, but Woodson said he didn't know if Lin would be ready to play Wednesday in Game 5.
Iman Shumpert tore his ACL in Game 1, and the only other point guard on the roster is Toney Douglas, who fell out of the rotation early this season and never got back in.
His struggles, and later those of Bibby, were part of the reason for the Knicks' slow start before former coach Mike D'Antoni turned in early February to Lin, the undrafted point guard from Harvard who ended up as one of the biggest surprises of the season when he finally got his chance.
Davis was driving up the court for a potential go-ahead basket when his right leg buckled and he fell to the court with 5:15 left. Concerned teammates quickly waved for help as Davis remained on the court.
''We just started playing for him. That's really all it came down to. Everyone really wanted to win this game for him,'' center Tyson Chandler said. ''It's just guy after guy going out with injury and that was a tough one to watch.''
Davis battled injuries all season, starting with a herniated disk in his back that kept him out until February. The veteran is popular around the league, and players from both teams talked to him before he was wheeled off the floor. Knicks forward Amare Stoudemire said he almost shed a tear after Davis went down.
''BD is a really good friend of mine and always has been since I got in the NBA and it is unfortunate that happened,'' LeBron James said.