Sun, Nov 19, 2006 - Page 23 News List

Injured Shaq to sit out four to six weeks


Thirteen-time National Basketball Association all-star Shaquille O'Neal will undergo knee surgery and be sidelined four to six weeks, the Miami Heat said on Friday.

O'Neal tore cartilage in his left knee on Nov. 12 against Houston, an injury originally diagnosed as a hyperextended knee.

Last season, O'Neal sprained his ankle in Miami's home opener and missed the next 18 games. He sat out a total of 23 games, and the Heat went 10-13 without him before their postseason charge to the NBA title.

O'Neal missed Tuesday's game, practiced on Thursday and was expected to play on Friday against the New York Knicks.

But the Heat announced shortly before tipoff that he would undergo surgery, with the date to be determined.

O'Neal, 34, wore a sport coat and tie as he watched the game from the bench. He missed two games earlier in the season with a bruise to the knee and would miss 18 to 25 games if sidelined four to six weeks.

His latest injury, a flap tear in the articular cartilage, occurred when he collided with Chuck Hayes of Houston. Hayes is expected to miss up to two weeks with a bruised and hyperextended left knee.

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