Knicks Welcome Big Man Tyson Chandler, Waive Billups
MANHATTAN — The Knicks rolled out the welcome mat for powerhouse center Tyson Chandler Saturday afternoon.
The 7-foot-1 big man comes to New York as part of a three-team trade trade with the Dallas Mavericks and the Washington Wizards.
In the deal, the Knicks sent center Ronny Turiaf to Washington and guard Andy Rautins to Dallas.
They also waived veteran guard Chuncey Billups to make room for Chandler under the salary cap using the league's new amnesty rule, according to ESPN. Under the rule, Billups' $14.2 million salary will not count towards the team's cap.
The much sought-after Chandler, who will reportedly make $56 million over four years, averages more than 8 rebounds per game during his 10 years in the league and will join superstar forwards Amar'e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony.
“Tyson will be the anchor to our defense,” coach Mike D’Antoni said. “The trio of Amar’e Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony and Tyson makes one of the most formidable frontlines in the entire league.”
At the team's practice facility in upstate Greenburgh, Chandler said that he's relishing playing in the Big Apple.
"This is a dream come true to play in New York City amongst the great fans that come and support in Madison Square Garden," he said.
"To be able to come to New York City and play alongside guys like Amar'e...and Carmelo and all the rest of the guys, it's unbelievable.
"I feel like we're going to put ourselves in the position to contend and I'm excited about it."
Chandler has put up big numbers in the post-season, helping the Mavs win their first ever NBA Championship last season.
In the post-season run up to the championship, the Hartford, Conn., native averaged more than 9 rebounds per game over 21 games.