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RandBall: Knicks' Tyson Chandler says Love "can't play D"

  • Blog Post by: Michael Rand
  • March 7, 2014 - 9:22 AM

As if Wednesday's home loss to the Knicks wasn't damaging enough for the Wolves, a halftime interview over on the New York side added another layer of insult to the plot.

Tyson Chandler, interviewed by a sideline reporter in one of those seemingly harmless scenarios where players usually say absolutely nothing, took it upon himself to say that Kevin Love, "Can't play D" (video above).

That's the familiar old rap on Love. At times, it still very much rings true. But ...

A look inside the numbers shows that Love actually has improved quite a bit on that end of the floor. Offense will always be his number one contribution, but right now he has 3.1 defensive win shares -- 18th in the entire NBA and seventh among power forwards. He has the seventh-highest defensive rebounding percentage in the league (30.6). Both of those numbers are better than Chandler.

His defensive rating of 102 is not great, but it's not terrible. And again, it's better than Chandler's (105).

Sure, Chandler should not be anyone's defensive benchmark. But as critical as we all have been of Love's defense at times, it is legitimately better than it has been this year.

© 2014 Star Tribune