Tyson Chandler, New York Knicks Must Wait To Start Their Season After Hurricane Sandy

November 2, 2012 – 5:30 am by Eric Schmoldt

The highly awaited season-opener in New York will simply have to wait a little longer. The New York Knicks and relocated Brooklyn Nets were set to tip off their seasons on Thursday night, but the game had  to be postponed until later this month in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. The teams will now play Nov. 26.

Tyson Chandler joined ESPN Radio New York with The Michael Kay Show to discuss the postponement of the Knicks’ season-opener with the Brooklyn Nets, how the team is getting through the storm, the loss of Amare Stoudemire for 6-8 weeks, if there is a rivalry with the Nets, how good this Knicks team can be and why he’s still hungry for another title.

How much of a disappointment is it for you to have the season-opener with the Brooklyn Nets postponed?:

“It’s disappointing, but I completely understand. A lot of people are going through things right now and that’s more important than a basketball game at this point. … I’m definitely crossing my fingers [that Saturday’s game will be played], because you want to get back on the floor. I think all of us are itching. We’ve been through training camp, preseason and we’ve had a week off.”

How have you and your family and your teammates made it through the storm?:

“It’s a little difficult because it’s about five or six guys that live in the city. So, we cancelled the one day of practice and the second day we put it off until about 5:30 or 6 p.m., because of trees on the highways and a lot of things were closed down. … We had our first full practice [Wednesday] night and then we practiced today. I know Amare’s car was completely under water; his garage was completely flooded. It’s been difficult, but I know there’s a lot of other people out there who are dealing with worse circumstances.”

Do you think you guys will be able to fully concentrate on just basketball when you can get back out there?:

“Yeah, you know, I thank God nothing tragic happened to any of our players or any of our families. That would obviously make things a lot more difficult. But definitely our thoughts are with people not only in New York City, but the entire east coast.”

When the season starts, you guys will be without Amare for a while. How will that affect the team?:

“It does affect us, because Amare is a big piece to our puzzle, and I know he trained so hard this summer to get in shape and get back playing at that high level. I was personally disappointed that he had this minor setback. But I’m trying to stay in his ear and keep him positive.”

Does his absence for 6-8 weeks change what you think this team can accomplish this year?:

“No. We’re obviously going to need him down the stretch, but for the beginning of the season, Mr. [Glen] Grunwald did an excellent job of bringing in talent and big guys and making sure myself and Amare had backups. … He’s brought in Kurt Thomas, brought in Rasheed Wallace, brought in Marcus Camby for this type of situation.”

Do you feel this team will have more of a rivalry now with the Nets because they are in Brooklyn?:

“A lot of people have been saying that. Honestly, I don’t feel much of a rivalry, because I think … I feel more of a rivalry with a Boston or Miami. You have to kind of go through some games or some punches and some attitude and all that. They relocated to Brooklyn … but honestly I don’t feel a rivalry.”

How good can this Knicks team be?:

“Ultimately, Miami sets the stage. They’re the defending champs and they earned that right. But I feel like we’ve got a lot of depth this year. I think our size and our depth is going to be our advantage throughout the year. … Our first goal is to win our division, win in the first round of the playoffs and we’ll go from there.”

You’ve won an NBA championship and two gold medals. Is everything just gravy now?:

“No, I’m still hungry. I had a taste of victory and won my first title and that’s an unbelievable feeling that you really can’t describe. Now I know why I play the game. For so many years, I’d been on losing teams and then I’d been on teams that were close, but not really a contender. Then you play on a team and you guys go all the way and win a championship. … A lot of the great players of my generation, you understand why they still lace them up. I’m hungry and I want another one.”

Listen to Tyson Chandler on ESPN Radio New York here

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