By Ben Golliver
The Knicks announced Tuesday that All-Star center Tyson Chandler is expected to miss about one week after an MRI revealed a a small bulging disk in his cervical spine.
Chandler has been sidelined for New York's last three games after bruising his left knee against the Nuggets last Wednesday. The Knicks then announced Sunday that Chandler was also suffering from a strained neck muscle, prompting the MRI.
If Chandler is sidelined exactly one week, he will miss three games, all against lottery-bound teams. The Knicks play host to the Magic on Wednesday before having an away-and-home, back-to-back with the Raptors on Friday and Saturday.
New York snapped a four-game losing streak by beating the Jazz on Monday in Utah but lost veteran forward Kurt Thomas to a foot injury. Chandler and Thomas are joined on the Knicks' injury list by Carmelo Anthony (knee), Amar'e Stoudemire (knee) and Rasheed Wallace (foot); New York’s big man rotation is down to Marcus Camby, Kenyon Martin and Chris Copeland.
Chandler, 30, is the NBA's reigning Defensive Player of the Year and was named to his first All-Star Game this season. He's averaging 10.7 points and leading the Knicks with 11.0 rebounds, 1.1 blocks and 64.5 percent shooting. Chandler, who is in the second year of a four-year, $55 million contract that pays him $13.6 million this season, hadn't missed a game this season before last week's knee injury. The Knicks are 39-26, good for the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference. The franchise is seeking its first playoff-series victory since 2000.