Friday, May 07, 2010

FanHouse: Shoals: When Josh Childress Comes Marching Home

The original Washington Post article contains what seems to me a highly innocuous quote from Josh Childress at the Euroleague Final Four (watch live on ESPN3 at 2:55 EDT):
"I'll decide by July 15. But right now, I have a lot to accomplish still -- this tournament, and then the rest of the season in the Greek league."

He acknowledged that he has been following the Hawks in the NBA playoffs, though he quickly added, "because of the time difference, not all that much." And when a persistent questioner pressed Childress on the chances he might remain in Greece, he showed no trace of irritation.

"Listen -- it's been an excellent two years," he said. "It's been a growing experience, yes, but I never saw this as a temporary fix. I thought of it as a three-year deal, and it could very well end that way."

There will be lots of things that impact Childress's decision--things in Greece, things in Atlanta, things in the NBA. The first and third are financial concerns. The second is fully under control of the Atlanta Hawks organization.

No disrespect to Marvin Williams, who does some things well and is a very good supporting player, but plug Childress into that starting three spot and Atlanta becomes a far more cohesive, or at least less precarious, squad.
Had Mike Woodson been willing to do that, I don't think Josh Childress would be playing for Olympiacos today. But Woodson loves defined roles. He decided Marvin Williams was starter and Josh Childress would come off the bench. The hierarchy was defined and nothing that happened on or off the court could change that. In his last season in Atlanta, Josh Childress was far more productive than Marvin Williams yet Williams played 500 more minutes than Childress. Williams had a disastrous playoff series against the Celtics. It was painful to watch him try valiantly and fail repeatedly. But, had Williams not gotten ejected from Game 7 he would have played more minutes in that series than Childress despite the Hawks being outscored by 27.6 points per 100 possessions Williams was on the floor during the series.

If Mike Woodson's gone*, there's a better chance that Josh Childress returns to the Atlanta Hawks. That's a piece of the argument for hiring a new coach because the sentences that follow the above excerpt from Shoals are absolutely true:
At the same time, that holds true for pretty much any team. Josh Childress will only make you stronger.
*Somewhat perversely, if Mike Woodson's gone, I think there's a better chance that Marvin Williams becomes a more productive basketball player as well.


Aaron said...

You simply cannot ignore Childress' lack of perimeter ability.

He has advantages, for sure, but the last thing the Hawks need is another player that complicates things for Joe and Jamal.

Childress should be moved in a S&T for a future pick.

Unknown said...

Why does Childress complicate things? He is a decent defender who does not require many touches to score.

Bret LaGree said...

Aaron --

I'm intrigued by your argument but have to admit I don't grasp it. Childress is a career 36% three-point shooter (in the NBA) and basically never takes a bad shot (60 TS%).

Most of the complications Joe and Jamal face are, in my opinion, if not of their own creation, ones they willingly accept.

Aaron said...

Bret, he rarely takes a three, which makes his success rate irrelevant. Childress' best fit would be on a team that doesn't need his help in spreading the floor.

To be honest, I'm a little shocked that some of you have forgotten what a difference Evans' perimeter ability made for the Hawks last season.

Childress is a good player in need of a different team. A team with Josh Smith and Josh Childress sharing the court would mean the guards would never see an open shot.

And, Derek, the Hawks already have a forward who is a decent defender who doesn't require many touches to score. They don't need a second one unless it's for the minimum.

Unknown said...

Are you referring to Marvin or Mo in reference to the forward?

If Evans, do you think he will be around next year? He could leave and I would imagine he will.

Also, as Brett has mentioned in the past, the dynamic of this team could and probably will be much different should we employ a coach who runs plays or in Woodson's defense has players who listen to the plays that he claims to call.

CoCo said...

Maybe the new owners (assuming the sale goes through this summer) will make it intriguing for him to come back, or at the very least do something about his rights. The Josh Childress situation needs to be resolved this summer one way or another.

weemsildinho said...

I think Childress would fit in pretty well with this current team. Sure, Evans is better shooting the 3 and can space the floor, but Childress was very adept cutting off the ball and finding space around the rim to make himself availible for a pass off of isolations. The way the Hawks stand around on isolations now a days, having someone like that would be nice. Plus, he is a good rebounder, shoots well over 50% from the floor for his career, and would add even more length to our lineup. His PER his final season in Atlanta was 18, which means he was easily one of the top reserves in the league that year.

In closing, I would love to see him back in a Hawks uniform next year. He has proven to be a very effective NBA player, and considering some of the garbage on the end of the atlanta bench (west, morris), it would be nice to replace them with a guy who actually belongs in the league