Ladies, let’s take a moment to thank our maker for the 7-foot-1, 240-pound basketball player that is Tyson Chandler!
The New York Knicks center will cover his first magazine, this Wednesday [July 11], with the release of ESPN’s fourth annual Body Issue, taking it all off!
Further to taking it all off, Chandler also sat down with ESPN to chat about his decision to pose in the nude, growing up on a farm, and being self conscious about his body.
Why did you decide to pose for the Body Issue?
TC: I think it gives the average person a good look at athletes’ bodies and why we are able to do the things we do. I think a lot of people are curious about it. I wanted to allow people to look at my body and see why I’m able to do the things I do on the court. Also, it’s a very artistic shoot, and seeing that in past issues made me want to do it.
What do you like about your body?
TC: My stature. I’m tall with broad shoulders. And my waist is small. I’m into fashion, so I like the way clothes lay on me. I’m pretty much a normal person’s size, just stretched out.
What challenges do you face with your body?
TC: Everyday living. Getting on an airplane, using the restroom in the airplane — they are totally not built for you. When you go to a restaurant, you can’t just take any table — your legs and knees don’t fit. Just little things like that you wouldn’t think about.
Have you ever felt self-conscious about your body?
TC: I did at an early age. I was always proud of my height, but I was self-conscious because I was really skinny. I always wanted to be bigger. I didn’t like to wear shorts or show my legs at all because I thought they were way too skinny when I was younger. I was self-conscious about my arms, too. I got teased all the time. They’d call me Green Giant. I was 6’4″ in sixth grade, and I grew three inches every summer until eighth grade. I would try to lift weights, but I was growing so fast I could never keep up, I couldn’t keep weight on. I had no biceps or chest muscles. I was never able to keep weight on until I got to the NBA. But back then, I took my anger out on the court. Once we got on the court, I went hard.
It was tough for my mom because she could never keep up clothes-wise. At the time we were really struggling financially, so it became a burden. For a while I got clothes passed down from my cousin, but then I outgrew him, so the hand-me-downs weren’t working so much. My mom also struggled to keep food on the table because I ate so much.
I had to stop trick-or-treating when I was 11. That year, I was a vampire. I went trick-or-treating with some of my cousins, who were older than me. They were like 15, and nobody gave them any trouble. Meanwhile, I was 11, and I show up to a door — “Trick or Treat!” — and the lady who answered was like, “Don’t you think you’re a little too old to be asking for candy?” I just walked away and that was it.
He has nothing to feel self-conscious about now!
Photo Credit: ESPN