Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Updated: March 27, 7:27 AM ET
Tyson Chandler out vs. Celtics
By Jared Zwerling
Special to ESPNNewYork.com
BOSTON -- New York Knicks center Tyson Chandler missed his seventh consecutive game, sitting out Tuesday against the Boston Celtics because of a small bulging disk in his neck.
"He just said he was not ready," Knicks coach Mike Woodson said prior to Tuesday's 100-85 victory. "Until he's ready, he's going to be out."
"Yesterday, I knew that my body wasn't ready," Chandler said. "I started to have some pain. Last night to this morning, I knew right away that it wasn't quite there."
Speaking to reporters in the locker room before the game at the TD Garden, Chandler said he will "most likely" miss Wednesday's home game against the Memphis Grizzlies. He said he's experiencing a painful sensation from his neck to his shoulders.
While Chandler said he doesn't foresee the injury keeping him out too long, and he isn't worried about it long-term, he knows it needs time to heal.
"When I get on the basketball court, I'm going to play defense and rebound and look up, so that's kind of my problem right now," he said. "When you can't move afterwards, it's a little different. This is not going to be something that I'm just going to be able to fight through."
Chandler, a first-time All-Star and reigning Defensive Player of the Year, is averaging 10.7 points, 11.0 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game for the Knicks (43-26), who sit atop the Atlantic Division.
But the Knicks' interior defense has struggled without him, allowing opponents to shoot 70 percent inside five feet for the six games leading up to the victory in Boston.
Prior to Chandler's injury, the Knicks allowed opponents to shoot 60.3 percent on those attempts, slightly above the NBA average (59.2 percent).
In Chandler's absence, Woodson started the same five from the previous three games -- Pablo Prigioni, Raymond Felton, Iman Shumpert, Carmelo Anthony and Kenyon Martin, who averaged 16 points, 7 rebounds and 1 block per game during that stretch.
Celtics guard Courtney Lee (sprained left ankle) sat out his second consecutive game Tuesday.
Jordan Crawford drew the spot start for Boston, allowing the Celtics to keep Jason Terry in his preferred bench role.
ESPNBoston.com's Chris Forsberg contributed to this report. Jared Zwerling is a regular contributor to ESPNNewYork.com.