Carmelo Anthony left the court after his knee buckled. (Tony Dejak / AP)

Carmelo Anthony’s sore right knee revealed itself to the world in the most public way possible: midway through the second quarter of the New York Knicks’ game against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday night in Cleveland.

With the Knicks down by 22, Anthony turned at midcourt to take a pass and, with not a single Cav in sight, awkwardly fell to the floor, looking as if he’d tripped himself. He got up slowly and headed straight for the locker room. He did not return and afterward admitted that his knee had been bothering him for a couple of weeks. He even had an MRI recently to confirm that there was nothing wrong.

“Before the game I felt like I was dragging my right leg,” Anthony said (via the New York Daily News‘ Frank Isola). “Maybe that one particular possession I didn’t really have the control that I wanted on that leg and kind of tripped over my other leg.”

Without Anthony — and with Amar’e Stoudemire playing just over his prescribed 30 minutes, the Knicks outscored the Cavs 72-45 and won 102-97.

Anthony said his previous MRI “came back great. We don’t think it’s too serious.” But there was tightness in the back of the knee before the game and Anthony said he considered sitting out.  “It’s just sore, not pain, sore and stiffness,” Anthony said. “It’s been going on for a while now.”

Anthony, who missed two games when he hyperextended his knee in December, seemed to think there’d be no further tests on his knee, but it is uncertain whether he’ll play Wednesday night with the Knicks playing the Oklahoma City Thunder on Thursday in the Garden.

“There is no one in this league that is 100% except for maybe a rookie,” Stoudemire, who scored 22 points in nearly 32 minutes, said. “But when you’re playing 10 or 11 years you’re never 100%. It is a matter of maintaining your health. I’m pretty sure Melo knows how to take care of himself.”

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