Phoenix Suns buying out Tyson Chandler

Tyson Chandler Suns

Heading into Saturday's game against the Portland Trail Blazers, the Lakers ranked 21st in defensive rating - down nine spots from last season, undermining the improvement L.A. has made at the offensive end of the court with the addition of LeBron James. JaVale McGee is one of the best alley-oop finishers in the league, and Tyson Chandler, though underrated in this regard, is right up there.

By adding Tyson Chandler, the Lakers will get a dependable veteran backup center who can block shots and deter people at the rim.

The Phoenix Suns are buying out Chandler's contract, a move that will allow the 18-year veteran - once he clears waivers - to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers. And he's appeared in 1,086 games, which is 10th most among all active National Basketball Association players. No offense to either of these players, but the Lakers' defense suffers when they are in the lineup. His $13 million-plus contract was up at the end of the 2018-19 season.

Might the Lakers have been better off waiting?

The Lakers kick off their season on October 18 with a visit to the Portland Trail Blazers before playing their first home game against the Houston Rockets at the Staples Center on October 20.

It's certainly possible that Chandler will be energized by playing for a contending team in his native L.A. after spending the past three years in the wilderness with the Suns. Chandler had a game-winning alley-oop dunk for the Suns in a game previous year as time expired, so he knows exactly how its run. Other centers will surely emerge as buyout candidates as their teams fall out of contention.

Adding Chandler is an excellent move for the Lakers at this point in the season.

Chandler should provide some much-needed depth to the Lakers' group of centers.

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