Tyson Chandler doesn’t fit the stereotypical mold of a professional athlete. As a seasoned NBA veteran, now approaching his 13th year in the league, Chandler’s outlook has always been proof that a positive attitude shines over a negative one. With that being said, we’re proud to announce that Tyson will now be representing the House of Marley as a member of Team Marley.
Being a part of Team Marley is a lifestyle. It means that not only are you the best at your game, but that you also have an interest in supporting the world that surrounds you. Through his numerous charity initiatives and volunteer man hours, Tyson has always demonstrated compassion for others, both on and off the basketball court.
We recently had an opportunity to sit down with Tyson and pick his brain about everything ranging from his start in basketball to his favorite on-ear headphones. Get the lowdown on Tyson’s views on style, role models and the #LiveMarley movement below and find out what this NBA champion does to give back to the community.
Who or what inspired you to pursue basketball professionally?
I would say my surroundings. Growing up in the area I grew up in… I grew up in a lot of rough neighborhoods. Basketball was a way to get out for me.
Now that you’ve made it to the NBA and have won a championship and an Olympic medal, what inspires you to keep pushing?
My family. My family and the drive to be the best.
Are there certain people in your life who have served as role models for the way you live?
Yeah. For sure. Outside of my sport, my grandfather. He definitely showed me what a true work ethic is and how to be professional and how to take my professionalism seriously. I would say that he has been the biggest role model throughout my career.
What about in terms of basketball players? Who has influenced your career?
Bill Russell, Scottie Pippen, Charles Oakley. Those are a couple of guys that have inspired me.
What made you want to work with the House of Marley over other Audio/Lifestyle brands that you could have represented?
I love the passion behind the House of Marley and what they are trying to create and do. The quality, what they stand for… I love the creativity. Obviously, Bob Marley and what he stood for and how he creative he was. It just has inspired us all so much. I just wanted to be a part of it.
What’s your favorite House of Marley product? What about the House of Marley style were you drawn to?
The wooden headphones. When I was first introduced to the products, I loved the creativity with the wood. It was something that I had never seen before or seen anywhere else. It’s not only an audio system or a product, it’s also a fashion statement and art piece. That is one of the things that really drew me to it.
How do you #LiveMarley? What does #LiveMarley mean to you?
I #LiveMarley because whatever situation I’m in, whether it be the team I’m on or the various charities I’m involved in, I try to make the situation better than I found it. To me, that’s what Marley is all about. It’s about coming into a situation, putting your stamp on it and making it better than you found it.
How important is philanthropy, helping those less fortunate and giving back?
It’s very important. That should be the circle of life. You have to evolve as a person. I didn’t come from a great area and I definitely wasn’t privileged. It’s very important to me to give back to children who are less privileged because I was once in that situation. I want to inspire them and show them that they don’t have to stay in their current situation. They can get out of it and become anything they want to. I think it’s important for everyone to do that. It not only helps who you are aiming to help, but it also helps you within. It can also help you get a grip on reality.
What charities are you currently working with?
I work with UNICEF and that’s the biggest thing that I’m into right now. I went over to Africa last summer and really saw a lot of what they are doing and what they are trying to accomplish. That’s really my driving force right now.
How important is family to you?
My family is me. It’s what I live for everyday. I have three little ones and I’m molding them to be young women and a young man in society. I want to do the best I can. It’s the same as I said before… Put your stamp on something and leave it better than you found it. I’m molding them to do the same so that they can put their own stamp on the world and leave it better than they found it.
Bonus: Aside from being an all around nice guy and charitable person, Tyson Chandler can straight up play basketball. Check out some crazy jams, putbacks and alley-oops from his past few seasons with the New York Knicks.