The day that Tyson Chandler was signed and traded to the NY Knicks; changed my view of the front office and Grunwald in particular. This was a major outside the box move, if there was ever one. Losing Chauncey was a blow, but in my opinion he was vastly over rated at this point in his career. If you had the Billups of old , than that’s a different story all together. His age and legs was a question mark at that point and he did not fair well in the Mike D system.
During the beginning of that off season, my colleagues here at the SWAG were discussing what the Knicks needed in the middle to help Amare in every way, especially on the D. We talked about getting a “Tyson type player, but not obviously Tyson because NY can’t afford him”. Players names surfaced like Kwame Brown, Marcus Camby, Deandre Jordan, and Josh McRoberts to name a few. I never in my dreams would I have thought that Grunwald would pull off this move. After the rumor surfaced that the Knicks were “close to landing ” Tyson, I feverishly called all my colleagues to break the news like I was a little kid. Was it possible the Knicks could land this NBA champion and the central figure in that Dallas Mavericks title?When it was confirmed that he was a Knick and he actually wanted to come here and play with Amare and Melo, I was rejuvenated( at least until Mike D brought me back down to reality).
In his first season you saw his intensity, toughness and attitude towards becoming a solid defensive team. That was his main goal, to keep players together and working on becoming that defensive power house that the Mavericks were. That effort was wasted with Mike D as coach , as well as Tyson’s main reason for being here. He was here to cover up Amare’s mistake’s and instill defensive honor to this team.
When Mike D resigned and Mike Woodson took over , you could see the instant change in Tyson’s feel for the D. He finally had a coach here that would preach defense the way he was on the court during games. The Knicks quickly vaulted to the top of the league in defense and were becoming a force to be reckoned with. His offense was it has always been, but on the defensive end of the court he was giving NY and NY fans what they craved for years. Heart and Soul.
With the combination of coach Woodson’s love and desire for defense , and the desire and know how of Tyson Chandler , do you think this can take the Knicks to new levels? If you add Marcus Camby, who will be a great back up center for Tyson and gives the Knicks a 48 minute 1, 2 punch. How far can this team go and how good can this defense be in 2012/13? Lets find out. Lets get it…
Peter A. Knickswag Chief Editor