Rick Carlisle: Mavericks should retire Tyson Chandler’s number

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Tyson Chandler dreams of having his number retired.

If it was going happen, it would’ve been in Dallas, where he won a championship in 2011 and played excellently last season.

But that idea went out the window when Chandler signed with the Suns – unless you ask Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle.

Carlisle, via Eddie Sefko of The Dallas Morning News:

“We have nothing but the utmost respect for him. It’s my hope – and this of course is not my decision – that one day he will get consideration to have his number retired here. I think he deserves that consideration. And I know Mark really has great respect for him, even though the way things went twice. There are people that feel he doesn’t, but I know Mark has a lot of respect for Tyson and a lot of gratitude for what he did for us, as do I and our fans.”

Carlisle was quick to add that it won’t be his decision on whether Chandler’s No. 6 one day graces the rafters at American Airlines Center. But if he had a vote, he’d be all for it.

“My opinion is that he’s worthy and more than worthy based on history and just because he’s such a special person on top of it,” Carlisle said. “I know he’s in a good situation and he’s really going to help Phoenix.

It’s a shame Dallas and Chandler couldn’t work things out, as Chandler and Mavericks owner Mark Cuban seem to acknowledge. It was a great fit.

But Chandler played just two seasons with the Mavericks. It’d be absurd for them to his retire his number.

Just four teams have retired the number of a player with two or fewer years with that team:

  • Timberwolves: Malik Sealy, 2
  • Cavaliers: Nate Thurmond, 2
  • Pelicans: Pete Maravich, 0
  • Heat: Michael Jordan, 0

Sealy was killed in 2000 car crash while playing for Minnesota, which memorialized him by retiring his number.

Thurmond is an Ohio native who gets “squeamish” when he sees his banner and wishes it had an asterisk.

The Pelicans’ inherited Maravich’s retired number from the Hornets, who sent it to the rafters while they were in New Orleans. Maravich never played for the Hornets, but he had a distinguished career in New Orleans with the Jazz and in the state with LSU.

Miami retired Jordan’s number, because Pat Riley is a weirdo.

Chandler is living. He’s from California, not Texas. He never played for a team that moved from Dallas. He’s not the greatest player of all time.

The Mavericks have retired just two numbers – 15 (Brad Davis) and 22 (Rolando Blackman). Even when Dirk Nowitzki‘s 41 goes up shortly after his retirement, they’ll have plenty of room in the rafters.

Stretching to retire Chandler’s number is not the answer.