Chris Andersen: Versatile Veteran Has Enough in Tank to Help Playoff Contender

Daine PavloskiAnalyst IIJanuary 8, 2013

Andersen has caught the eye of a few playoff contenders in the NBA. Is he worth the pick-up?
Andersen has caught the eye of a few playoff contenders in the NBA. Is he worth the pick-up?Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Chris Andersen is an interesting character. Whether it's his tattoos or weird hair, his appearance is always a little out there. Taking on a player like Andersen isn't your normal, everyday free-agent acquisition. Acquiring a player like Chris usually comes with some baggage.  

So, as the rumors surrounding Andersen's next destination continue to swirl, will the wacky veteran be picked up? Is he even worth the trouble?

Yes and yes.  

The 34-year-old big man might not have the most impressive stat line, averaging just over five points, four rebounds and one block per game in his career, but he hustles and plays harder than a lot of big men in the NBA

Andersen can be a huge help to any team's defense, which he showed in the 2007-2008 season when he averaged 2.3 blocks per game, which was second in the entire league. 

Andersen has spent his career making the most of his opportunities, as he's only averaged over 20 minutes per game three times in his career. Andersen has been great at spelling other great big men like Nene in Denver, and producing off the bench.

"Birdman" was released from the Nuggets last July and has become the topic of free agency rumors for a few high-profile teams. The Heat and the Knicks have shown interest in the veteran, which would both be good fits for Andersen. 

The former Nugget fan-favorite isn't going to play 30 minutes every night and put up crazy numbers, but he's more than capable of helping out these playoff contenders defensively, and bringing some postseason experience to the young squads. 

Andersen may be a bit of a weirdo, but he's more than capable of coming off the bench and producing for playoff contenders who don't expect the world out of him. The Knicks and Heat can survive without Chris, but adding him would give them more chances to get their big-name players off the floor and get a break, while getting some rebounding and blocks in the process. 

Chris Andersen is a hustle player who plays great defense, and as a wise man once said, "Defense wins championships." Those are words that playoff contenders need to heed as the season goes on and they find themselves in need of a big man.