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Monday, June 18, 2012
Chandler guides HS team during playoff run

By Jared Zwerling

This past spring, Harlem's Wadleigh High School's boys basketball team was distracted and unfocused as they were preparing for their first Manhattan borough title.

That's when head coach, Micheal Crump, thought they could use some extra motivation from a proven leader. Well, guess who? Tyson Chandler paid a special visit to the school to inspire the Harlem Hellfighters during their quest for a championship.

The experience was featured as part of MTV2's show "Nothing But Net," which had its season finale on Sunday. Kevin Durant of the Thunder was also a mentor for a high school team in Oklahoma City.

Chandler spoke to the players about life, basketball and setting goals.

"Everything you guys do right now is kind of like the foundation of your future. It starts in high school and preparing for college," he told them. "Going to school in Compton, [Calif.], I probably saw everything. Shootings, riots -- I probably saw a little too much. I never let it get the best of me because I always knew there was something bigger than what I was seeing. I always felt like whatever was going on, I could get past it."

Chandler was drafted right out of high school (Dominguez) in 2001 as the second overall pick by the Clippers, and then was traded to the Bulls, where he played for five seasons.

Click here to check out the season finale and to see how Wadleigh High fared.

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