Time is running out on the Detroit Pistons and, perhaps, the brilliant basketball career of Chauncey Billups.

Billups, who had knee surgery to clean up a small left meniscus tear last week, hopes to play again this season, yet seemed to yield to the possibility that his career could be over late Monday after the Pistons lost 104-96 to the Golden State Warriors.

"Father Time is undefeated, man," Billups said.

Asked if that means he could lose the inevitable fight, Billups didn't bother playing it coy.

"My gas light is on," he said.

Billups signed with the Pistons last summer as a free agent.

His two-year contract includes a team option for next year, which the Pistons certainly wouldn't exercise on an unhealthy player -- nor, perhaps, would Billups stick around under those conditions.

"It all kind of depends how this feels and how things are with the knee," he said. "If the knee is fine, then sure, absolutely, I would like to come back. If it's not, I don't want to come back and do this. It's tough to do this, especially on a team when we're not a winning team at this stage."

Billups said he hopes to return but he has to "just kind of see."

"I'm not gonna rush back. I do just want to get it better. But I hope so," he said, when asked if the objective is to return this year.

Billups had arthroscopic surgery last week to clean up a knee that had bothered him since the first time the Pistons played Golden State, way back on Nov. 12, when he was still a starter but lasted just six minutes.