8:50 pm Sep. 12, 2012
An already deep Brookyn Nets roster added another useful piece on Tuesday, when Josh Childress, a 6'8", 210 pound small forward, agreed to join the Nets on a one-year, veteran's minimum contract.
Childress, 29, has excelled in a reserve role before. He spent four years with the Hawks, posting above-average P.E.R. numbers in each season while generally serving as first player off the bench. His game complements that of starter Gerald Wallace nicely, with strong passing and decent rebounding skills to go along with an ability to finish around the basket and strong defense.
Childress was available following two poor seasons with the Phoenix Suns, who play a comically mismatched system for him. The Nets are likely to strongly resemble the Atlanta Hawks teams where Childress played his best basketball, so if the skills that made him an important contributor there are still around, he will be quite valuable to his new team. At age 29, there's no reason to think they've disappeared.
Really, the only problem the Nets have at forward is a possible overload of useful players, which is generally the problem a basketball team wants to have. Kris Humphries and Gerald Wallace are the starters at the power and small forward positions, while free agent Reggie Evans is a more classic four to back up Humphries. The Nets also signed Mirza Teletovic, a prolific European scorer, to a three-year deal at significant money, so they aren't expecting him to show up and not play. But he's either fourth or fifth on the forward chart, depending on how Avery Johnson deploys him, Evans and Childress.
One possible solution involves lineups with Humphries at center, Evans or Teletovic at power forward, and Wallace or Childress at small forward. The flexibility Childress provides is significant, while serving as a hedge against anything happening to Wallace.
The Nets have filled their roster with talented players whose skills seem to mesh well. The Josh Childress acquisition is no exception.