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Chandler returns against Philadelphia

3/11/2012

Knicks center Tyson Chandler returned to the court on Sunday against the Philadelphia 76ers after a two-game absence.

Chandler missed the final two games of the Knicks' four-game road trip due to a left hamstring strain.

The Knicks hope that Chandler's return can help provide stability on defense.

Without Chandler in the lineup, New York has allowed 118.5 points per game and struggled to defend the rim. San Antonio scored 60 points in the paint in a 118-105 win over New York on Wednesday. Milwaukee had 17 offensive rebounds to the Knicks' 9 in a 119-114 win on Friday.

"Tyson coming back will help," coach Mike D'Antoni said. "But if we don't have the intensity or if we're not focused, razor sharp, it will come out somewhere else."

Chandler is also dealing with lingering pain in his left wrist. He has played with protective padding on his wrist since injuring it on Feb. 19 in a win over Dallas.

The Knicks will be without reserve forward Jared Jeffries on Sunday. Jeffries has missed the past two games with a sore right knee.

D'Antoni did not rule Jeffries out for Monday's game at Chicago but hinted that he was more likely to return Wednesday against Portland.

The Knicks (18-22) have lost four straight -- all on the road. They enter play Sunday in eighth place in the Eastern Conference, two games ahead of Milwaukee.