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Past Fantasy Outlooks
Chandler played in just 47 games last season while dealing with a personal matter and an ankle injury, eventually being shut down for the season and not participating in any contests after the All-Star break -- a decision by coach Earl Watson to get an extended look at the team’s young players. He was productive when he took the floor, however, recording 8.4 points and 11.5 rebounds across 27.6 minutes per game while shooting 67.1 percent from the field. Though his best years are behind him, Chandler still has massive upside as a rebounder, as he recorded 14 games last season with at least 15 rebounds. That said, coach Earl Watson’s willingness to send Chandler home at the All-Star break in favor of Alex Len and Alan Williams doesn’t bode well for Chandler’s Fantasy stock heading into the 2017-18 campaign. While he still projects to be the starter, the possibility of him quickly getting pulled from games or frequently ending up in street clothes is legitimate. As a result, it’s best to exercise caution when considering drafting Chandler, as there are much less risky options out there. That said, if he slides way down the draft board, his upside as a rebounder is hard to pass up.
The Suns inked Chandler to a four-year, $52 million contract last summer with the expectation that he’d give the team a rim-protecting presence and serve as a reliable pick-and-roll finisher for point guard Eric Bledsoe, but things didn’t pan out quite as well as the organization may have hoped. The 34-year-old seemed to lose a step on the defensive end, averaging 8.7 boards -- his fewest since 2009-10 -- and 0.7 blocks per game, the first time he’d recorded less than one rejection per game in his 15 NBA seasons. In addition, with Bledsoe suffering a season-ending meniscus tear in late December, Chandler largely struggled to get involved offensively, resulting in him contributing 7.2 points per game on 58.3 percent shooting from the field for the season, which was also his lowest percentage since 2009-10. With Chandler’s performance seemingly on the decline and injuries sidelining him for at least 15 games in three of the last four seasons, it wouldn’t be surprising to see his playing time dip further from the 24.5 minutes he averaged in 2015-16. Chandler will open the upcoming campaign in a starting role, but up-and-coming former lottery pick Alex Len could end up surpassing him on the depth chart as the season progresses.
Following a one-year return to Dallas, Chandler will transition to the Suns this season, his sixth team since entering the league in 2001. While he'll turn 33 before the start of the season, Chandler's production has shown no signs of falling off, as he's coming off of one of the best statistical years of his career. In 75 games, Chandler averaged 10.3 points, 11.5 rebounds, and 1.2 blocks per game while shooting 67 percent from the floor, up from 59 percent in 2013-14. He also showed improvement at the free-throw line, hitting 72 percent of his attempts, nearly eight points above his career average. Chandler is on the back-end of his prime, but he'll be asked to carry a major defensive load for the Suns, a team in flux after dealing two major pieces at the trade deadline. Chandler will unquestionably open the season as the starting center, and with the power forward position far from solidified as of early-September, his rim protecting abilities will be more valuable than ever. The question is how much emerging, young center Alex Len will cut into Chandler's minutes. Len is more diverse on the offensive end, but playing the two together would seem to contrast with coach Jeff Hornacek's desire to employ lineups featuring power forwards who can threaten defenses from the perimeter. Regardless, Chandler will remain one of the league's most consistent rebounders and shot-blockers, though it will be interesting to note how he adjusts to playing with Eric Bledsoe and, especially Brandon Knight, who is not known for his abilities as a pick-and-roll distributor.
After three years in New York, Tyson Chandler returns to Dallas, the team he helped lead to a championship just four seasons ago. His second stint with the Mavericks will be the 14th season of his career. Last year was a disappointment for the former Defensive Player of the Year as injuries, including a broken leg, limited him to just 55 games played. Chandler averaged 8.7 points, 9.6 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 0.7 steals, and 1.1 blocks in 30 minutes per game. He shot 59 percent from the field on 5.9 attempts per game and 63 percent from the free-throw line on 2.8 attempts per game. Dallas acquired Chandler prior to draft day, surrendering starting point guard Jose Calderon in the process. The Mavs hope Chandler can man the middle and effectively lead what was a particularly porous defense. He won't be a focal point on offense, but Chandler should see plenty of lobs and second-chance opportunities with a plethora of Dallas shooters spreading the floor. Health remains the key to Chandler's value and Dallas' medical team will look to recreate the magic they discovered during the 2010-11 season when they kept him on the court for 74 games, the second highest total of his career.
While Chandler didn't get as much publicity as he did during his first season in New York, he had a near identical campaign from a statistical standpoint. The 31-year-old veteran remained the team's defensive anchor, grabbing 10.7 rebounds and swatting away 1.1 shots per game. He also provided his usual low-volume, high-efficiency marks on offense, averaging 10.4 points per game while shooting 64 percent from the floor and 69 percent from the line. The only complaint filed against Chandler's campaign was that he missed 16 games due to a lingering back issue. At this stage of his career, we know what Chandler has to offer – solid rebounding and stellar field goal shooting while adding 1-plus block per night. He's now on the wrong side of 30, but Chandler still appears to have a couple years of quality play in his legs, and the Knicks will continue to rely on him to provide the team with defensive toughness.
Lured to the Knicks by a massive $48-million dollar contract prior to the season, Chandler proved to be worth every cent in his first campaign in New York. The 30-year-old veteran came up just shy of averaging a double-double for the second time in his career, finishing with averages of 11.3 points and 9.9 rebounds in 33 minutes per game. That scoring average was the second highest of Chandler’s career and the first time he eclipsed 11 points per game since the 2007-08 season. He was more efficient than ever, hitting an astounding 67.9 percent of his field-goal attempts, which would have qualified for best in the league if he took more than 5.7 shots per game. On the defensive side of the ball, Chandler once again proved to be one the league’s best, helping boost the Knicks’ defense to respectability while blocking 1.4 shots per game. Chandler also managed to stay relatively healthy, appearing in 62 of 66 games. While he dealt with a dislocated finger during the Summer Olympics, the issue isn’t expected to be a problem once camp opens. The Knicks will continue to rely on Chandler heavily on the boards and defensive end of the court, but the glut of scoring options (Carmelo Anthony, Amare Stoudemire, J.R. Smith, Raymond Felton) on the roster, and the addition of Marcus Camby this offseason, could result in a slight drop off from last season. He’s still a quality No. 2 center to target, but don’t go building your frontcourt around Chandler.
After an injury-marred season with the Bobcats, Chandler was expected to join the Mavericks as part of a timeshare at center with Brendan Haywood. Instead, Chandler grabbed hold of the starting gig and put together one of the best seasons of his career. The 7-1 big man anchored the Mavericks’ defense, making it one of most-improved units in the NBA. He was a nightly double-double threat, finishing the season with averages of 10.1 points, 9.4 rebounds and 1.1 blocks while shooting a career-best 65.4 percent from the floor and 73.2 from the free throw line. Most importantly, Chandler managed to play in 74 games, staying relatively injury free after missing 67 games over his previous two seasons. Chandler signed with the Knicks shortly after the NBA lockout lifted, meaning he'll be in a similar face-paced system and serving as the defense and rebounding big man alongside a talented scoring power forward. If anything, New York's system affords Chandler slightly more upside than he had in Dallas due to the high number of possessions Mike D'Antoni's teams generate.
Chandler was sent from Charlotte to Dallas this summer in a deal that had Erick Dampier going the other way. That leaves Brendan Haywood as the only other player with whom Chandler will have to contend for minutes. In his best years-2006-07 and 2007-08 with New Orleans-Chandler has been a top-85 player, buoyed by excellent rebound numbers and field goal percentages, while being taken down by free throw percentages in the mid-50% area. It's unlikely he ascends to those levels this year, however.
On the heels of his best two seasons in the NBA, Chandler entered the 2008-09 campaign as one of the top-rated centers in the league. Unfortunately, Chandler’s play was drastically hampered by injuries last season. He averaged just 8.8 points, 8.7 rebounds and 1.2 blocks while appearing in only 45 games. The Hornets quickly lost interest in their starting center and tried trading Chandler to Oklahoma City during the season, but the deal was nixed due to the Thunder’s medical staff having concerns with a pre-existing turf toe injury that plagued Chandler during the 2007-08 playoffs. New Orleans welcomed Chandler back for the remainder of the season, but shipped him to Charlotte this summer. In Charlotte, Chandler is expected to man the center position for the starting unit, but coach Larry Brown could also slide him over to power forward at times. While a healthy Chandler shouldn’t have any problems regaining the rebounding prowess he had shown in previous years, his offensive production should take a significant hit in Charlotte. Without a premier point guard like Chris Paul creating offensive chances for the seven-footer, and Chandler’s lack of a post-up game, a sharp decline in shooting percentage and points is on the horizon.
Chandler is in the perfect system to suit his game. At 7-1, he’s extremely long and athletic with the ability to dominate the glass (11.7 rpg) and be disruptive on defense (1.1 bpg). He’s not very polished on offense, though, with no post moves to speak of and very little shooting touch (59.3 % FT). That’s where playing next to all-world point guard Chris Paul comes in. Chandler averaged a career-high 11.8 ppg on 62.3 percent shooting from the field, and a large chunk of those points came off of the pick-and-roll alley oop play that Paul and Chandler have perfected. Between the dunks of Paul passes and the put-back opportunities created from his league-leading 4.1 offensive rebounds/game, Chandler should continue to get the easy shots that round out his game beyond that of purely the defensive role player.
Chandler came on strong over the second half of last season, averaging 12.7 ppg on 65 percent shooting from the field after the All-Star Break to go along with almost 13 boards and two blocks per night. His explosion corresponded with the return to health of Chris Paul, who pushes the pace and breaks down opposing defenses to create easy opportunities for his big men. This plays right into Chandler’s strengths, as he’s one of the faster and more athletic big men in the NBA. When healthy and locked in, very few have the ability to keep Chandler off the glass and away from the rim. This season, Chandler has the upside to put up Marcus Camby-like numbers across the board, though be aware that Chandler can really damage your free-throw percentage.
Chandler had a disappointing year last season but the change in scenery may help him. He practiced a great deal during this off-season, adjusted his shooting form, and has vowed to come in with a more offensive mindset. While we’ll have to wait and see if the changes will actually translate to greater offensive production, it’s realistic that he’ll score about 10 points a game mostly on put-backs. His defense and rebounding ability is still top-notch, and he’ll put up 10 rebounds and 1.5 blocks a game. What may affect his stats more than his change in shooting form is the amount of playing time. If he can stay healthy and out of foul trouble (3rd in league with 3.8 per game), his numbers could jump by playing starter minutes. Don’t count on him to make many free throws though, he averages 61.5% for his career, shooting a career low of 50.3% last year.
Chandler still isn't the player that Elton Brand is (the Bulls traded Brand to acquire Chandler in 2001), but he showed the kind of force he can be in the last four games of Chicago's playoff series against Washington, averaging 16 points, 11 rebounds and 2.25 blocks over that span. An active rebounder and shot-blocker, Chandler ended up 10th in the league in rebounding at 9.7 per game, and his1.8 rejections per contest are well above replacement value for a power forward. Chandler is already a defensive force, but has also worked hard on his shooting touch, knocking down 49% of his shots last year. Expect him to see more touches in the offense this season, and if his minutes go up over the 30-per-game mark, look out.
Chandler has shown flashes of his considerable potential in three seasons since being drafted out of high school. This is the season where he grows up. Reports from Chicago say he's refined his shooting in the offseason and been one of the Bulls' hardest workers in conditioning programs. If he can stay healthy, look for him to become a major part of the offense, with 15-and-9 averages a real possibility.
When coach Bill Cartwright committed to giving him 30 minutes per game, Chandler started to produce. Before a throat injury ended his season in April 2003, he averaged 11.8 points, 9.7 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game during February and March. He also had 11 double-doubles in that time. He can play in the paint or on the perimeter, and possesses a nice touch with a 53.6 field-goal percentage. He will be the starting power forward and appears to be on the way up. This could be the last year you’re able to sneak him through the draft.
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