Team Needs: Backup Small Forward

We already went over the need to add some bigs to roam the paint and back up Perkins (see: Team Needs: Center/Big Man).  Now we shift our attention to the backup small forward spot.  Paul Pierce looked tired and weary at the end of the playoffs.  Some of that was because KG wasn't around and Ray Allen was hot and cold.  So too often Paul felt like he had to carry the team on his shoulders.  But it also has something to do with the lack of rest he got - which is a direct result of the lack of reliable options off the bench at the 3 spot.

Tony Allen is more of a shooting guard, injuries backed Scalabrine into a power forward role, and Bill Walker was just too green to help out much.  So a clear need is someone that can give Pierce a rest without making Doc bite off the corner of his clipboard.

First of all, there's always a chance that Walker could take a major step forward this offseason and force his way into the regular rotation.  He has the athleticism and spunk that could make him an asset on the floor.  However, I don't think Doc is comfortable with his grasp of the system or his decision making abilities yet.  The guess here is that he gets another year as a 3rd stringer and sees action when injuries or foul trouble dictate a need.

So who else can we get?

Free Agents (see my list of potential free agents for reference)

Grant Hill - He seems to be the fan favorite, and for good reason.  He's getting up there in age, but that just means his price tag will not be too high.  In limited minutes he can be a steady, skilled hand of the bench.

Quinton Ross - He's a defensive specialist who can hit an occasional mid-range jump shot.  Think James Posey without the 3 point range.  Again, I don't think he'd take a lot of money to sign but he seems like one of those kind of guys that makes good teams better.  See a nice breakdown on him here.

Josh Childress - Despite a year overseas, most should be pretty familiar with Childress after he gave us such fits in the playoffs 2 years back.  He's a jack of all trades that would fit in nicely here.  The trick is that the Hawks still own his rights.  So if we think the Hawks will match an offer to him, a sign and trade might be the only way to get him.  See more on him here.

Others: Hakim Warrick, Joey Graham, Matt Barnes

Trades:

Any trade we make without shaking up the roster in a big way would have to be using expiring contracts like Scalabrine and Tony Allen.  So we might as well restrict our serach to guys making around 8M or less (which seems reasonable since we're looking for backups, not starters).  I've already made the case for bringing back James Posey.  Ainge already looked into picking up Andres Nocioni.  Both options add long term contracts and effectively end Wyc's dream of clearing cap room for next year's free agent class (though I'm not sure how realistic that really is).  Corey Maggette is another one that Ainge pursued as a free agent, but his contract might be hard to swallow.  There may be some less expensive options out there that I'm missing as well.

The Draft:

Once again, we can't rule the option of buying a pick earlier in the draft than where we're picking now (58).  However, it would be hard to fathom a rookie coming in and getting Doc's trust and beating out Bill Walker for the job.

So who would you like to add to the team?  Who am I forgetting?

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