To my surprise, the Clippers decided to hang on to Kareem Rush. Now even though I dumped on Kareem’s D the other day, I’m actually not upset with this decision. Truth is that after Steve Novak, Rush probably has the best 3-pt shot on the team. And we need good outside shooters to space out the floor so Baron, Telfair, Gordon & Thornton can slash, while Kaman & (eventually) Griffin can go to work down low. Kareem’s a much better defender than Novak, so it should be easier to get him out there on the floor. Also, since he’s a much better shooter than Ricky Davis, I’d put him ahead of Ricky on the depth chart too. Oh, and he’s definitely better than Mardy Collins too. In other words, he and Thornton/Butler(depending which starts) should be our main backups at the swing positions. If we could have waived anyone, I’d’ve gone for Ricky & Mardy, but they have guaranteed contracts.
That also brings up another interesting aspect to the signing: Rush’s contract doesn’t become fully guaranteed until January. The thought was that Dunleavy normally likes to carry 14 players so he can pick up another player during the season if need be. Well, if someone goes down in the next two months, he can drop Rush without having to pay him a cent more & go & grab someone else. OR… if Rush has truly taken over that backup spot, then Dunleavy/Sterling can decide if it’s the worth the hit to keep Rush and buy out Mardy/Ricky/whoever so they can add that extra player. And again, when we’re talking what that extra player might be that we’d need, it’s really just point guard we’re talkin’ ’bout. We’ve got 5 very, very capable bigs (Kaman, Camby, Griffin, DeAndre & Rhino) and 2 more bodies to throw into the mix(Brian Skinner & some Steve Novak at the 4), so we’re totally fine if one of ‘em goes down. Heck, we can still do well if 2 go down. We’ve now got 6+ potential swingmen (Eric Gordon, Thornton, Rasual, Kareem, Ricky, Mardy — w/Novak playing some SF too). However, PG-wise it’s really just Baron & Telfair. Sure, Mardy’s played some PG, but as I’ve said, I’d rather go with no PG & have Eric Gordon in that spot.
Anyway, so I’ve got no problem with us keeping Rush. In fact, I like it. My problem, not to flog a dead horse, is I still think the Clips should’ve kept Mike Taylor as the third-string PG. And then they could’ve just not signed Brian Skinner. I mean if we do end up needing another backup big, and Skinner was snatched up by another team, is he really much different from other bigs who’re still available like Chris Mihm, Lorenzen Wright, Melvin Ely, etc.?