Tyson Chandler stepped to the podium, accepted his trophy Wednesday as the NBA's Defensive Player of the Year and thanked his teammates ­­for facilitating the accolade.

"I would like to thank my teammates because without their poor defense and letting people fly by them I wouldn't get credit for stepping up," Chandler said.

He laughed, but there was more truth than humor in the statement. Chandler ended Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard's three-year reign as top defender.