The Warriors are courting Tyson Chandler, which might explain why the string bean was spotted at Sunday’s 49ers game. My convoluted thought on Chandler: If signing him isn’t a mistake, it could make signing David Lee an unmistake.
And signing Tyson Chandler could very well be a mistake. Just a year ago, he was plied off a scrap heap in exchange for Dampier’s expiring contract. Chandler’s best days were thought to be behind him, as his addled legs were caught in an invisible, intractable, bear trap manacle. And magically, playing in Dallas made him healthfully valuable. Tyson reclaimed his old athleticism en route to claiming a championship.
This is what happens on franchises that augment the value of signings. The Warriors have not been one of these teams–far from it. A GSW player is bound to regress, accrue injuries. A Warriors player is destined to go the way of Andris Biedrins.
Two years ago, Biedrins’ value exceeded that of Chandler. The main gripe regarding Dre’s play was lack of minutes–on account of Don Nelson’s small-ball obsession. In the Summer of 2008, Baron Davis left for L.A. There was the collapse at the free throw line (Biedrins’ 08’ FT % is more than his 09’ and 10’ FT % combined). There were the injuries. Worst, there was the gradual avoidance of any contact that could send him towards more free throw embarrassment.
As Tyson Chandler once appeared merely an extension of Chris Paul’s genius, revisionist Biedrins analysis could easily be: The Latvian was only a claymation by film director Baron Davis. With Davis long gone, the Warriors are left with an inanimate seven-foot reminder of those (relative) “We Believe” glories.
Now, Tyson could get the huge salary that prompts Golden State to amnesty or trade Biedrins. “Amnesty” might go both ways here: The Warriors will be saved from a man who lets them down at a crucial position, and that man will be extricated from the rocky crags where his future ran aground.
Could Tyson Chandler cure what ails Golden State? I would say that Tyson Chandler could be illustrative of the cure. If he arrived and thrived, it would speak to a sea change from the top. Injury prone defensive centers could not exist in Cohan Land anymore than you could walk around the moon sans space suit. If Chandler–or Nene for that matter–stayed healthy and productive, it would mean that the Warriors are not the Warriors as we’ve come to understand them.
If Lacob is for real, if the Warriors are reformed, if the medical staff has been overhauled for the better, I say: Go for it. Sign Tyson Chandler for upwards of 11 million per year, part ways with Biedrins. But it will be grimly revealing if Andris succeeds elsewhere and Tyson becomes the new Andris. It will aslo be sadly familiar.