I'm sure we'll hear more details about Tyson Chandler's neck closer to game time, but here's this for now:
Tyson Chandler's bulging disk has apparently flared up again. Knicks say he is doubtful for tonight's game vs. Washington— Howard Beck (@HowardBeckNYT) April 9, 2013
That may have been bound to happen. A bulging disc in the neck of a giant man who uses his neck a lot (Tyson rebounds with his mouth) isn't just going to disappear without prolonged rest. Chandler bought himself some recuperation with that ten-game absence and was reportedly feeling great during the weekend games, but perhaps a spike in minutes since Kenyon Martin sat aggravated the injury. Maybe Tyson just needs a new mattress. We've got our Knicks on some memory foam, right? We must. Gallo wouldn't have it any other way.
Anyway, Tyson absolutely should not and almost certainly won't play tonight against the Wizards. Take a few games off. The rest of the regular season, if need be. With Martin still questionable and Marcus Camby still out on that bum foot, Tyson's absence will make for some comically small lineups (Possible starting centers: Carmelo Anthony, Steve Novak, Chris Copeland, an olive), but the Knicks are pretty close to clinching things and obviating effort in the remaining games. Maximal playoff health is the goal, even if it leads to Steve Novak getting dunked on a lot. Have fun with it. Set some three-point records.
On that note, everyone's been calling Martin's absence "precautionary" and whatnot, but I'd be fine with him getting the same treatment as Chandler. (For what it's worth, they're saying he's a "game-time decision"). No need to rush him back just because Chandler's out again. Melo's minutes could be scaled back, too. Or just forfeit. Keep rolling the ball out of bounds until time expires. Take turns cursing at the refs until everyone gets ejected. Have everyone curl up in the fetal position in the corner of the court for 48 minutes. NO TOUCHING. THERE MUST NOT BE INJURIES.