Amidst all the clamor on Thursday about NBA deals that weren't completed, there was relatively scant attention paid to one that is apparently done: The Knicks have reportedly agreed on a deal that will bring free agent center Tyson Chandler to Madison Square Garden.
A key presence in the paint for the world champion Dallas Mavericks last season, Chandler has reportedly agreed to a 4-year deal worth $58 million with the Knicks. Initially, it was unclear if the Knicks were going to orchestrate a sign-and-trade deal with the Mavs, a more complex three-team deal, or if New York would use the amnesty rule to clear the contract of Chauncey Billups off the books in order to sign the 29-year-old directly.
On Friday, Chandler appeared on the "Ben and Skin Show" on ESPN 103.3 in Dallas and confirmed his intention to sign with the Knicks. Asked about his new deal, Chandler responded:
"It was with the Knicks. But, you know, nothing is absolutely certain until you put ink to paper," said Chandler, who indicated the deal came together quickly. "So, I'm just working on that part."
Chandler also revealed that, as far as he knew, the deal would not be a sign and trade with the Mavericks. Asked why he chose the Knicks, Chandler spoke about the potential for success in the Big Apple.
"I just think the future of the team, you know, being able to play alongside Amare Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony and the young talent that they already have, I feel like puts us in contention over the next four or five years," Chandler said on the radio.
Prior to the Knicks' swoop for Chandler, the Golden State Warriors were considered the most likely landing spot. Once reports of the Chandler-to-Knicks deal spread, the question turned to whether the Knicks would ship either Amar'e Stoudemire or Carmelo Anthony to New Orleans in a deal that would yield Chris Paul. Those rumors seemed quashed by the widely-reported deal sending Paul to the Lakers. However, with the NBA controversially vetoing that swap, the Knicks could again look to pair Chandler with his former running mate... for #basketballreasons.