Earlier this week, New York Knicks center Tyson Chandler met with members of the media and talked about his off-season goals heading into next season. According to a report on ESPN New York, one of those goals is to condition himself to become more of a “threat” on the offensive end of the floor.
Off the bat, the knee-jerk reaction to that comment was that Chandler was demanding for more attention and looks from the inside. However, that isn’t what Chandler is saying at all. Instead, what Chandler is saying is when he touches the ball this season, he wants to be more versatile in the rhythm of the offense.
The key quote pulled from Jared Zwerling’s article was:
“I want to come back in better condition and I want to be more of a force on the block,” [Chandler] said. “I want to be able to pass better out of pick-and-rolls. I just want to become more of a threat. Myself and Amare, we really have to become a threat on the block. I mean, we have the pieces here and we have to get better. … I’ve got to come back a better player next year.”
To me, that right there is the crux of what Tyson wants. He isn’t suggesting that he wants to be able to take 10-15 shots a game or become the focal point of the offense down low. Instead, what he’s saying is he wants to expand his game and be better conditioned to fit the current Knicks offensive scheme.
Chandler did a fantastic job last season both on offense and defense, winning the Defensive Player of the Year and shooting an astronomical 67.9% from the field. I think it would be foolish for anyone to expect Chandler to replicate that type of effectiveness from the field, but should he expand his game where he needs to be watched at all times on the block would be huge for the Knicks moving forward. Anyone that can take eyes off of Carmelo Anthony and allow him more freedom to move around the court is huge.
Again, nobody should take these comments as Tyson Chandler demanding enough attention on offense where he will average 20 points and 15 rebounds. Instead, this is Chandler saying all the right things, once again, and vowing to better condition himself for a regular 81-game season and become more polished on the block.
Will it actually work out that way? Only time will tell. But, this is a great example of a Knicks star saying all the right things heading into a choatic and confusing off-season.