The Los Angeles Lakers addressed a major need with the signing of Tyson Chandler after he was bought out by the Phoenix Suns and cleared waivers. A Southern California native who attended Dominguez High School, Chandler will fill the backup center role.
That spot has been a struggle for the Lakers who have used a combination of Ivica Zubac and two-way player Jonathan Williams behind starter JaVale McGee. Even though McGee has been one of the most consistent Lakers so far this season, the team has struggled with big, strong centers who can dominate down low.
One person who is excited about the addition is LeBron James, who spoke about what Chandler will bring to the Lakers, via Spectrum SportsNet:
“Love the fact that we’re going to get another veteran. A guy who plays hard, a guy who’s very smart and another champion to add to the champions we have in this system. It adds depth in our front court, which we’ve had trouble with at times. Between Zu, Tyson, JaVale and J-3, we’re pretty good.”
Now in his 18th season, Chandler’s best years are undoubtedly behind him, but there is still plenty left in the tank and he will bring a lot to this Lakers team. As James noted, Chandler is a former NBA champion with a ton of experience and knowledge to impart on the Lakers youth.
On the court, he gives the team a true big who can bang down low with the bigger centers the NBA has to offer, while also providing solid rebounding and rim protection. He is also a capable finisher at the rim and could benefit from playing alongside the Lakers’ playmakers much like McGee has.
The Lakers made the decision to keep an open roster spot exactly for something like this and there is no doubt that the addition of Chandler has many more in the organization just as excited as LeBron.